Friday, June 24, 2022

How to create logos with the strongest brand message.

How to create logos with the strongest brand messaging. Lifting weight..

When customers are just getting to know a brand, that brand's messaging is critical.  In addition to being aware of varying personal needs states, brands need to be aware of the broader world they (and their customers) live in. 

"Awareness (mental availability) is the best path to customer acquisition, which is, in turn, the only true path to growth."   

 – Ehrenberg-Bass Institute

If we deconstruct a brand's messaging we can then take those parts to reconstruct perhaps an even stronger brand, and objectively gain a better understanding of what brands are saying to consumers.  Similar to an autopsy of a human that uncovers the cause of death and brings knowledge that could prevent similar deaths in the future. 

When you think about it, a brand often recognized by its logo can be broken down into three major parts (1) Colors, (2) Shapes, and (3) Words.  Although there are some other factors used to fine-tune a brand such as a jingle, marketing channel, and voice.  This article will focus on the prior. 

Number One: Colors

color | ˈkələr (British colour) | noun 

1 the property possessed by an object of producing different sensations in the eye 

Let's take a look at how colors work together and how they influence your brand messaging.

The colors you choose for your brand set the tone, just as a red stop sign helps you identify the warning.  If you don't stop and there is a collision, the next color you might see is flashing red lights, and when someone dies, the color black will be commonplace at the funeral.  So, it's by association with real-life events that colors can be used to trigger human emotions.  All colors, like people, have negative and positive traits.

When you apply these colors to some of today's most popular brands (McDonald's, Starbucks, Walmart), it's clear why they use the colors they do and a better understanding of what colors you might consider for your new brand's logo.

Number Two: Shapes

shape | SHāp | noun

1 the external form or appearance characteristic of someone or something; the outline of an area or figure.

Let's take a look now at how shapes work together, and how they influence your brand messaging.

The shapes that you choose for your brand set the direction just as a straight line helps you identify a direction or a boundary.  If you cross the solid line on a two-way road and there is a collision, the next line you might see is the zigzag line that records your heartbeat/pulse, better known as PEA (pulseless electrical activity), and if the some dies, the term "flatline" will be common in the ER (emergency room), thus, before the funeral.  So, it's by association with real-life events that shapes are used to trigger human direction and outcomes.  All shapes, like people, are made up of different curves and lengths.

It's common to see an "arrow" used for companies that offer solutions for growth.  However, the hexagon is most like the single most common shape in nature, and one that most astounds mathematicians.  Most labels on fruits and vegetables are oval or circles, which many of the most iconic brands (Mercedes, Target, ABC) in the world use. The circle is a universal symbol with extensive meaning – notions of totality, wholeness, perfection, and the infinite. Meanwhile, a heating and air company or swimming pool business often uses wavy lines to represent air and water respectively.  

Shapes of your product are also commonplace in branding.  For example, Play-Doh uses images that represent letters made of clay, while McDonald's "Golden Arches" resemble their World Famous French Fries®.  Starbucks uses a Green mythological creature (a super mermaid) as the biggest symbol and the face of the brand, inspired by Moby Dick, which makes perfect sense for a coffee company's hometown of Seattle, a port city.  

When thinking about the shapes your brand might use, you might ask yourself where "it" comes from, and what will "it" do for consumers?  For companies that serve food, this may be pretty simple, but what shapes would a package delivery or pet supply business use?  

Although the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) which empowers the media and marketing industries to thrive in the digital economy predicts the rise in the volume of online orders and the consumer willingness to pay extra for fast delivery pushed the value of the Last Mile market to $31.2b in 2018, and the market is predicted to reach $61.6b by 2025.  And, the Pet Supply CPG (consumer packaged goods) are growing the fastest online, we are not at liberty to tell you which shapes you should consider for your brand without being hired as your brand consultant. 

Number 3: Words

word | wərd | noun

1 a single distinct meaningful element of speech or writing, used with others (or sometimes alone) to form a sentence and typically shown with a space on either side when written or printed.

Let's take a look at how a word can influence your brand messaging

The word that you choose for your brand name can reinforce and refine the color choice and shape of your logo.  Using a short word is not only easy to spell, but it's also ideal because it tends to be very brandable and easy for consumers to remember aka catchy.  Some of the most recognized brands (IBM, Hulu, Uber, Lyft) use as few as three or four letters, while others only a single letter (Google,  Pinterest, McDonald's) to represent their brand's logo.

A backstory helps when thinking of words that represent brand names.  One huge brand examples that come to mind are Sam's Club and Wal-Mart created by Sam Walmart. 

"The key to greater productivity is to work smarter, not harder." 

– Allen F. Morgenstern  

Over two decades ago the founder of Oevae Marketing Consultants, Gibrón Williams set out to create a logo to represent the company.  He chose "Oevae"  –  a derivative of the Yiddish word "Oy Vey" and what he calls, "the original OMG."  He first heard of this Yiddish word through a close Jewish friend.  Gibrón was a young artist, and aspiring entrepreneur looking for the best brand name that would embody the essence of his creativity. He had a strong desire for a unique and memorable brand name people would admire and one that is fun to say, a brand name that represented the creative ideas the company intended to produce for small businesses. His Jewish friend would cry out "Oy Vey" whenever Gibrón did something highly creative and unusual. So he decided to name the creative marketing company "Oevae" – a short word with only five letters.

Consider how and where your brand will be distributed or visualized by consumers.  Will your logo be on a business card, t-shirt, merchandise, packaging, banners, brochures, and billboards? The combination of message and marketing channels can drive significant synergies that can boost the effectiveness of your marketing efforts for your brand.

"Marketing accounts for 10%-35% of a brand’s equity (visibility, such as seeing a product on the shelf or signage on a storefront and regular product usage)." 
– Nielsen   

Oevae logo designs use graphic messaging techniques to influence consumer perceptions with a broad reach because brand-building efforts are a lever to drive future sales.  Given the prevalence of choice and access, staying top-of-mind with consumers could be the difference-maker when a sale is at stake. This increased pressure on non-marketing sources of equity elevates the importance of marketing in preserving a brand’s health.  For more information or to get your brand design from oevae marketing consultants, visit oevae.com

Make a brand difference.™

Friday, June 3, 2022

Identifying and avoiding spam email and phishing scams


Approximately 10,746 days 
ago (1992) while working at Ticketmaster (an American ticket sales and distribution company / Live Nation Entertainment) as a call center supervisor and trainer I was first introduced to "email" – back then the email was nothing like it is today.  

In 1992 we used a basic monitor that looked more like small portable TV with a black screen and green text that was always left-justified to send an email.  Email messages would be sent using a line or two of code with your message, press enter, then wait for the cursor to start blinking whenever a message was received.  That was the basis of high-tech.  No cute little notification bell or fancy "you've got mail" in the '90s and absolutely nothing to fear. 

Fast forward to 2022 – one email can take over your computer, access your private documents, download malware, and lock you out of your computer among other unbeknown threats.  That's one bad step for man, one giant malware for mankind if you ask me.

"Email spam senders, or spammers, regularly alter their methods and messages to trick potential victims into downloading malware, sharing data, or sending money."  – Rahul Awati, Taina Teravainen, techtarget.com

Over the years email has helped advance the speed of business communications and helped others keep in touch with family without the need for a mailman or the "Forever Stamp" (always represents the current price of a one (1) ounce First-Class Mail postage) first promoted by the USPS (United States Postal Service) on April 12, 2007.

As not only an entrepreneur but one that helps other entrepreneurs market their businesses, I've seen hundreds of thousands of emails in my day.  Everything from promotional emails, email marketing, auto-reply, and drip campaigns, to Constant Contact, MailChimp, Keap, GMAIL, Hotmail, Yahoo Mail, EarthLink, and beyond.  In nearly 30 years I've managed to avoid most email phishing scams and spam messages to a fault. 

Identifying and avoiding email phishing scams

I've found that always looking at the "reply email address" of the email you received is your most efficient line of defense.  No, I don't trust spam blockers because hackers can be pretty tricky when it comes to navigating around well-known fences.  

In fig. 1 screenshot is phishing of an actual email said to be from Godaddy, yet the reply email address says has a typo and reading "Godady.com" which can easily be overlooked.


Other times you can identify email marauder by looking at the letters after the “dot” – as in “dot com” – to represent the Top Level Domain (TLD) such as Germany '.de', Australia '.au', Russia '.ru' which as you can see are all foreign.  Best practice would be "don't click on links" within emails that are not people or organizations, people, and companies you trust. But, I'll be honest, this can even be tricky.  

In fig. 2 screenshot is a screenshot of an email that is supposed to be from Apple, but the reply email address is "@t-online.de" – phishing for my Apple ID.


Don't open suspicious emails

Marking spam as spam when an unsolicited email makes an appearance in your inbox, never just delete it. Spam refers specifically to unsolicited bulk email (UBE). Unsolicited is the key word there. For example, You provide your email address to a company in order to download a business plan template. The company then begins emailing you updates about new products or related content. While the emails about new products or related content may be unwanted, they're not spam. Why? Technically speaking, You solicited them by giving the company your email address, which very well might sell your email address to another company. If this second company starts sending you emails, that's spam. Why? The emails from the second company are both unsolicited and unwanted because you never gave your email address to that second company.

Spam emails are almost always commercial and driven by a financial motive. These hackers try to promote and sell questionable goods, make false claims and deceive You into believing something that's not true.  Don't be bamboozled by the use of the logo.  

In Fig. 3 screenshot is a phishing email using an outdated version of the Godaddy logo.



Popular spam subjects often include: 
pharmaceuticals, adult content, financial services, online degrees, work-from-home jobs, online gambling, cryptocurrencies

The difference between spam and phishing

The primary difference between spam and phishing is that, although they both may be big nuisances:

• Phishing is actively aiming to steal login credentials and other sensitive data. 

• Spam is a tactic for hawking goods and services by sending unsolicited emails to bulk lists.

Don't forward emails to your friends or website designer

Forwarding your suspected emails to your friends or website designer will only spread the mayhem.  I've found that one of the best courses of action is to notify the "proposed" company of the spam by forwarding them the emails.  Example Godaddy spam should be sent to spam@godaddy.com and phishing email to phishing@godaddy.com, PayPal uses spoof@paypal.com, Square uses spoof@squareup.com, American Express uses spoof@americanexpress.com, Apple uses reportphishing@apple.com, and the United States Postal Services uses spam@uspis.gov.  

If you got a phishing email, forward it to the Anti-Phishing Working Group at reportphishing@apwg.org 

Over half of all global email traffic is spam

According to Cisco Systems, some 320 billion spam emails are sent every day, and 94% of malware is delivered via this medium.  Search by IP, domain, or network owner for real-time threat data.  Spam is always annoying, sometimes amusing, and often dangerous. According to Google, its Gmail service blocks more than 100 million phishing emails every single day.

You might also think for veterans like me who have had the same email company and email address for more than 20 years, and maybe it's a bit late to start using aliases, but think again. It's never too late to start dealing more effectively with the problem of email spam and phishing. 

Make a brand difference.™

Friday, May 27, 2022

Why is a Digital Marketing Plan Important for your Business?

Digital Marketing Plan in 6 Steps

To understand how important digital marketing is for businesses, we need to look at consumer behavior –  A recent study by Oberlo reveals that more than 2.1 billion people around the world made purchases online in 2020.

Shoppers flocking online is a prime reason why businesses need to be investing in digital marketing to stay competitive. However, you don’t have to have an eCommerce business to need digital marketing strategies in 2021.

Everyone from small businesses to global companies need to be visible online. Being where and when your customers are searching for you can mean the difference between winning or losing the sale.

"Mediocre marketers think in terms of campaigns. Great marketers think in terms of growth frameworks."  – Neil Patel

Whether it’s a brand or product, customers are using the internet and smart devices all day, everyday to help them make purchasing decisions.

How to Write a Digital Marketing Plan


Step 1: Start with a SWOT Analysis

By SWOT analysis or SWOT matrix, we mean the process of identifying your company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. This is the first step in developing an effective digital marketing strategy.

Think of this step as the cornerstone for the entire plan. The SWOT is an important situational analysis that considers any internal factors (strengths and weaknesses) and external factors (opportunities and threats).

Step 2: Set your Goals & Objectives

While your goal may be to make more sales, to get there you may need to increase product or brand awareness amongst your target market, or increase purchasing intent. These objectives will guide the types of digital marketing you do. Think carefully about where you want to get to (goals) and what it is that you need to achieve or change to get there (objectives).

Step 3: Create your Buyer Persona

There’s no success in marketing without customers, so if you want your digital marketing plan to work, you should have a clear picture of who your customer is, what they like and how they behave. That’s why marketers recommend creating what’s called buyer personas.

Learn More: How to write a digital marketing plan in 6 steps

About the author, Melissa How founded Marketing Wise in 2010 to demystify digital marketing and support businesses in their digital transformation journeys.  She is also Founder and Director of The Cocktail Shop, Australia’s fastest growing cocktail eCommerce business.

Make a brand difference.™

Saturday, May 14, 2022

How you can integrate digital technology into all areas of your e-commerce business


E-commerce is forecast to have 
over a 1% annual growth rate, achieving a nearly 22% share of total global retail sales by 2024, so you must stay aware of the changes that have the power to launch your business to new heights. While we can’t see the future, we know e-commerce will be everywhere in retail in the foreseeable future. 

The Perfect Purchase Experience

Shoppers are demanding secure, flexible transactions—and won't return to purchase again without a good reason.  So, what does this mean for you and your e-commerce business? Well, it means you’re going to need to get your digital marketing and e-commerce integration right if you want to succeed in this new retail era. 


Competition is greater than ever, so the more committed you are, the better chance you stand. Oevae Marketing Consultants can help you start integrating digital technology into your e-commerce business.


Develop Long-Term Growth

With your digital marketing in place, it’s time to focus on growing your e-commerce business. You’ll want to develop a long-term growth strategy. This should include a plan to acquire new customers and build your revenue. You may want to consider hiring a lead generation company or oevae.com can assist with this.


Your Lifestyle Business says that “one of the best ways to grow your e-commerce business is to create additional products that compliment your core offering.”


Creating additional products requires that you think about what people are asking for at a particular moment in time. You can also look at your current products and see where improvements or additional features could be added to make your products even better.


“It’s not a matter of determining what consumers are going to do, it’s making it possible in whatever they do.”  

 – Allen Greenspan, American Economist, Former Chair of the United States Federal Reserve.


Develop an Effective Digital Advertising Campaign

Now that you have a store and a lead magnet, it’s time to start marketing your products. As such, you will need to start creating an effective digital advertising campaign. This includes ads on social media sites, Google ads, and all other forms of digital marketing that you incorporate into your strategy.


You need to be consistent with your ads. And you need to be creative with your ads. Remember, competition is stiff when it comes to digital ads. So you need to think outside of the box to hold consumer attention.


Remote Work Is Effective

A great place to start is to allow some of your staff members to work from home. But in doing so, you must ensure effective communication among your team. A process map template is a great way of doing this.  This effective tool can help you keep your crew informed about all anticipated objectives, thus maintaining productivity.


Your process map template should not be the only thing you are working on. Simplilearn points out that big-data analysis is a worthwhile investment. Through process mining, you can discover, validate, or improve your workflows.


The Benefits of Process Mining

When it comes to process mining vs process discovery, you should understand that process discovery, which usually generates a process model, is a part of process mining. The overarching concept of process mining helps increase sales, increase efficiency in the workplace, and manage risk. You can even look forward to finding hidden opportunities that will help your e-commerce business grow. 


Start by identifying potential data sources. Once you have identified potential data sources, plan a timeline to identify key stakeholdersAutomated processes can also help you respond to customer demand more quickly. Automation reduces the need for human oversight. This allows you to focus on more strategic tasks such as product development.


Mobile Apps for a Better Customer Experience

Mobile apps are another feature you should think about. Without an easy payment option for your customers, you could lose significant revenue.


It is important to make sure your mobile payment application is secure. This is where authentication API can help. Paying via ACH (automated clearing house) allows customers the ability to instantly verify their routing numbers or bank account information.


Moreover, your app will seamlessly integrate with all ACH processors (including Dwolla and Stripe). This ensures that your customers will have a quick, easy, and user-friendly experience.


By incorporating and integrating the technology listed above – including digital marketing, process mining, and the latest mobile apps – you’ll be better positioned to optimize your e-commerce business.


Enhance your brand image, equip your staff, and launch your business with more efficiency and effectiveness with Oevae Marketing Consultants. Contact us today to find out more! +1 972-302-8284


Make a brand difference.™

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Did your website just get hacked?

A relaxing day at the beach may be one person's definition of having fun. Unfortunately, this person may also be a hacker who's breached your website security while lounging at the beach – injecting scripts that redirect traffic to destinations where they usually get scammed or infected with malware. And more importantly, you don't even know it's going on until someone tells you.


No website security?


Not having website security is worse than being caught with your pants down. That's because you know when your pants are down, and the very moment you hear someone entering the room, you cover your goodies and smile as if nothing ever happened. But when your website has its pants down, you'll be clueless until someone sends you an email, text, or actually picks up the phone to call you and tells you about it. For a business owner, this can be a rather embarrassing experience.


"The most recent Microsoft breach occurred on March 20, 2022, when the hacker group Lapsus$ announced on Telegram that they had breached the company. Several Microsoft projects, including Bing and Cortana, were compromised in the incident."  

 – Fire Wall Times, Microsoft Data Breaches: Full Timeline Through 2022, March 23, 2022


In a nutshell, Hackers illegally access devices or websites to steal peoples' personal information, which they use to commit the crimes like identity theft. Many people shop, bank, and pay bills online. People also store financial information, like credit cards or bank account numbers, on their devices. This isn't probably one of your business' offerings, but it's happening more and more each day.  


Common types of cybersecurity attacks


If you used WIX, Squarespace, Weebly, or Webflow to build your website you are probably a fish out of water trying to identify the common types of cybersecurity attacks (SQL injections, DNS hijacking, Malware, Cross-site scripting).


Cybersecurity involves safeguarding your business' website against cyberattacks. One of the easiest ways to thwart attackers is using website security that offers continuous website monitoring to detect malware and any indicators of compromise.


Cyberattacks can be costly to fix


The cost of putting your website back in order after a cyberattack can run you hundreds if not thousands of dollars. By acting quickly, you can often prevent further damage to your website and hopefully thwart additional attempts.  A hacked website costs your business a pretty penny because you will have to pay the website developer for the time they spend identifying the type of attack, whether the remaining files that makeup your website can still be used, and removing files the hackers leave behind to do their dirty work.


If you are lucky and your pages are still in cache, or available in the The Wayback Machine (digital archive of the World Wide Web founded by the Internet Archive), so you will be able to recover your full content or at least take the text from the page.


Protect your visitors by keeping hackers at bay


Malware scans regularly check your website daily to look for any malicious code. Intuitive options allow you to set notification preferences for yourself. When a malware, blocklisting, or security issues are detected on your website, you will be alerted immediately – set up notifications, you can avoid getting caught with your pants down.


Help ensure continuity and protect your business against adverse cyber events by using our comprehensive suite of security and resilience solutions. Exceptional threat management through a modern, cloud-native stack.


Oevae.com offers website security options that include:

  • Denial-of-service (DDoS) protection
  • Content Delivery Network (CDN) speed boost
  • Denial-of-service attack
  • A Firewall to prevent hackers
  • SSL certificate
  • Malware scanning.
  • Unlimited site cleanups


The best brands create positive experiences

Your brand experience happens both live and online – for their audiences. But today's audiences have higher expectations. You also put a tremendous amount of time, effort, and money into building your brand and creating a website experience that visitors will appreciate. Don't throw it all away at the fingertips of a hacker.  If you need more information, contact us at
Oevae.com 
– we help you find website security solutions.

Make a brand difference.™

Thursday, April 14, 2022

Why an External Hire Might Benefit Your Company

Many hiring managers and business owners prefer to hire from within their company. Internal hires are perceived as having additional company insight and dedication. While this is true, it doesn't mean that external hires should be underestimated.

Hiring an external full-time staff member or freelancer has many benefits, including a fresh perspective, new ideas and mindsets, and additional niche skills. 

If you're considering new personnel, but you're unsure whether an internal or external hire is best for your company, this guide could benefit you.


Types of External Hires

The best type of external hire for your company depends on the type of work you have planned. Many businesses choose to hire freelancers when they have a very specific one-off project that needs to be completed.

For example, to boost your promotional output during your business's peak season, you might choose to hire a freelance video editor to complete the project. As the work is not ongoing, a freelance external hire may be the best option as it's a time and cost-effective method. You can find video editors through online job platforms. Other types of freelance external hires include:

  • Photographers
  • Copywriters
  • Website developers

You may also want to consider hiring a permanent member of staff externally. Full-time external hires can add a new dimension to your company and can even help progression. If your team has fallen into a rut, a new external staff member could be the perfect solution.

Pros and Cons of an External Hire

One thing all types of external hires have in common is a fresh perspective on your company. It can be hard to accept that your team isn't performing at its optimal capacity; however, accepting this and responding accordingly is the most beneficial approach to prevent your business from becoming myopic, which may lead to failing marketing initiatives. That's where an external hire can help you.

Oevae Marketing Consultants, for example, can help put your marketing efforts on the right track. They can help you attract and retain customers via a host of marketing strategies and channels.

Whether it's a freelancer or a full-time employee, an external hire can help your growth, as it sometimes takes a fresh perspective to see the shortcomings of your strategy.

However, external hires don't come without drawbacks. External freelance and full-time staff don't have pre-existing knowledge about and dedication to your company, which is something to consider when hiring a new team member. 

Also, sometimes it makes sense to take advantage of off-the-shelf services for your business instead of hiring an employee or freelancer. For example, if you wanted to change your business structure, you could work with a formation service instead of paying up for an attorney. Or you could utilize accounting software like Sage or QuickBooks instead of bringing on an accountant.

Another option is to use a Facebook ad template, for instance, to jump-start your marketing efforts. This makes it easy to generate great-looking ad graphics quickly.

How to Hire an External Team Member that Suits Your Company

One of the most important things to look for in an external hire is differentiation. If there are already people in your company with all of the skills that your external hire possesses, why hire them? Find someone who has additional skills or experience from those who already work for you.

Other advice for hiring a new employee includes:

  • Assess their critical judgment
  • Determine if they have a genuine interest in the company
  • Unearth their leadership potential

Hire Outside the Company Today

No company is perfect, and every business needs a fresh set of eyes every once in a while. That's why choosing to hire externally is sometimes the best route for growing firms.

Oevae Marketing Consultants can empower your business by clarifying the best business marketing and branding solutions with the potential to attract prospects and get them interested about your brand experience – loyal customers who look for relevant problem-solving information, services, and products. For more information about our services, please visit our website oevae.com


Make a brand difference.™