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Promote Your Company Without Bragging

How to Promote Your Company Without Bragging

Everybody loves a good war story. They are often a great way to inform people of your services, expertise and accomplishments in an engaging way. While telling your story, you have to tread on a thin line between an engaging story and outright bragging. Holding on to these golden stories, but not letting the public know, is a missed opportunity for businesses. Sharing the positive aspects of your organization is the best tactic you can employ for your public image. Here are three ways to share all the good your company is doing without sounding like you’re bragging. Promote Your

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Facebook Algorithm

Customer Acquisition and Facebook’s Algorithm Change

As the first month of 2015 comes to a close, many small businesses and marketers are finding themselves contending with another change to how Facebook works. If you haven’t heard, Facebook announced in November that it is changing which types of content will appear in users’ news feeds. The change went into place this month, making posts from business pages that are deemed “overly promotional” no longer reach the business’ fans. Not only does this affect an organization’s digital marketing and promotional messaging, but its customer acquisition strategy as well. Key Elements of Customer Acquisition on Social Facebook has placed

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Communication Lessons from Martin Luther King Jr.

Communication Lessons from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Communication was Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s forte. He is known as one of America’s most influential speakers, even 52 years after he gave his iconic “I Have a Dream…” speech. During this speech, King captivated his audience with poetic language and thought-provoking ideas. He painted a picture of how life could be instead of focusing on the negative aspects of how life was. Today’s communicators can learn several public speaking lessons from King’s famous speech, including using positive language, narrowing your focus and using your words to create a visual description. Using Positive Language Makes Your Communication Clear Even though

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1.5 Stars Online Reputation

Repairing Your Online Reputation After Negative Reviews

Websites like Glassdoor have allowed people to see inside organizations through reviews from current and former employees. People post honest reviews, positive and negative. But what happens when the negative reviews overwhelm the positive ones? Consider how the negative reviews will affect your business and what you can do to manage the online reputation of your organization. If your business has found itself receiving consistent negative reviews, you may want to consider taking steps to repair your online reputation. Realize There May Be a Problem With Your Online Reputation First consider the commitment it will take. Repairing online reputation takes

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Public Relations Resolutions

3 Business Resolutions That Public Relations Can Help With

One of the many benefits of public relations is that it helps your brand build positive connections with its audiences that lead to profitable results. Here are three New Year’s Resolutions your business might have, and how enlisting a public relations agency can help you achieve them. Public Relations Promotes Your Business, so You Don’t Have To Sometimes promoting your business can fall by the wayside when you’re focusing on day-to-day tasks of keeping a company running. This is where an outside team of experts can come in handy. Instead of taking the time out of your day to post

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Risdall 2015

Happy New Year! – A Message from CEO Ted Risdall

It has been an amazing year of transition and growth for Risdall, and we’re poised for an extraordinary year in 2015. Our staff, strategy and growing client list have come a long way in the past 12 months. I’d like to start by giving thanks to my father, John Risdall. He founded this agency on the principle of giving clients what they want and need by drawing creativity from any and every communications discipline to help them make money, while also having fun in a prosperous agency environment. With the mantra, “It’s a party!” John’s integrated approach was ahead of

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John and Ted Risdall

Risdall’s Highlights from 2014

As we approach the end of 2014, we’d like to take a look at this last year and reflect upon the good times, memories and successes we’ve gained for our clients and the agency. At Risdall, we recognize that no one builds an ad agency alone. The support of our dedicated clients and hardworking staff members has allowed us to get where we are today. To all the individuals who worked with us to achieve success in 2014, thank you! Prosperity for Our Partners: Vision-Ease Lens – Celebrity Endorsement Vision-Ease Lens gained industry-leading coverage of its Coppertone Polarized Lenses, including

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Facebook Digital Marketing

Digital Marketing Impact of Facebook’s News Feed Change

Facebook announced last month that they were making a change to the type of content that appears on people’s news feeds. Content from business pages that is “overly promotional” won’t appear in the news feeds of people who have liked the page. The announcement came after the company looked into data from an ongoing survey of Facebook users, which showed that users want to see more content from friends and pages they care about, and fewer promotional posts. The change won’t occur until January 2015, but it will impact many online campaigns in the next year and will be another

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Risdall Content Marketing

Take Advantage of What You’re Already Doing with Content Curation

Content curation is an important aspect of any content marketing program. One of its main benefits is that the burden of continually creating content is alleviated by sharing content you find online with your audiences. In this final post about last month’s Growth Powered by Risdall seminar on content marketing, I, Dave Dougherty, Risdall’s Digital Marketing Specialist, will explore the advantages of content curation within a content program and how most people don’t have an excuse for why they haven’t started curating content on a daily basis. It’s much easier to do than you might initially think. Make the Content You

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Patient Portals Healthcare

Best Practices for Using Patient Portals to Enhance Healthcare Websites

Technology has a way of advancing faster than industries can keep up with it, but with rapid advances in technology comes inevitable advances in industries. A trend that has gained popularity with healthcare companies is creating patient portals to provide their patients with easy access to their health information. “A patient portal is a Web-based access point that allows doctors and patients to communicate and share health information remotely, supplementing the ongoing management of the patient’s care.” – Healthcare IT News Best Practices for Healthcare Patient Portals When a healthcare company decides to add a patient portal to its website,

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Risdall Content Marketing

How to Use Content Creation to Engage and Build Your Audience to Make Your Brand More Interesting

Last month, during Risdall’s Growth Powered by Risdall seminar I, Dave Dougherty, Risdall’s Digital Marketing Specialist, gave a presentation on the content creation aspects of a content marketing program. Instead of telling you how to create content, like a million other blogs do, I shared two key points to keep in mind during the content creation phase. I’ve found, both personally and with clients, it is easy to dive immediately into the tactical elements of content creation. Especially, when the thought that starts the process is something like: We need a YouTube presence. Let’s make a video today. It’s important

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Minnesota Business Magazine Community Impact Awards

Risdall is named a Finalist in 2015 Community Impact Awards

Each year Minnesota Business Magazine holds the Community Impact Awards to honor companies in Minnesota that place a high importance on giving back to their communities. For the magazine’s 2015 competition, Risdall was named one of three finalists in the Creative Campaign category for its strong devotion to helping families and children over the years. Risdall’s History of Community Involvement As a full-service digital marketing agency, Risdall is able to give back to the community in a unique way. Through a combination of monetary and skills-based donations, the agency helps non-profits and organizations in need. We have longstanding relationships with

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Risdall Content Marketing

How to Repurpose Your Content to Get the Most Out of Content Marketing

Repurposing content is an often overlooked feature of a content marketing program. Repurposing is useful for two reasons: getting a single message out in multiple ways, across multiple platforms, and easing the burden of always having to create new content or finding content to curate. In the recent seminar, Growth Powered by Risdall, I, Dave Dougherty, Risdall’s Digital Marketing Specialist, covered how to repurpose content once you’ve spent time developing your strategy and curating and creating content for your content marketing program. Don’t Sell Yourself Short by Not Repurposing Content Repurposing can be either drawing attention to an older piece

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Risdall Content Marketing

Using Content Marketing Strategy to Power Business Growth

In the November content marketing seminar, Growth Powered by Risdall, the digital marketing team opened the half-day festivities by explaining why you should start your content marketing planning with strategy. Content marketing is defined as the process of finding, developing and sharing relevant, valuable and engaging content with target audiences, with a goal of acquiring new customers or increasing business from existing customers. Without a good strategy in place you’ll be shooting into the dark, hoping that your content will do what you want it to. In this blog and video, Josh Dahmes, Risdall’s Chief Digital Marketing Manager explains the

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Risdall Content Marketing

Have Your Content Work for You through Content Optimization

This fall Risdall’s Digital Marketing team hosted a half-day seminar called, Growth Powered by Risdall, in which the digital team covered the most important aspects of a content marketing program. The video attached to this blog is a presentation by Tracy Henry, Risdall’s Senior Marketing Manager, covering how you should go about optimizing your content. For a long time, the focus of optimization has been on search engine optimization, or SEO. While that is definitely a part of it, optimization is a much larger topic that also focuses on the purpose that the content is created for and how the

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Risdall Content Marketing

How to Amplify Your Content to Get the Most Out of Your Digital Marketing

Throughout the year Risdall likes to host seminars where we can provide the latest and greatest tools, techniques and how-to’s for our current and prospective clients. Recently Risdall put on a seminar titled: Growth Powered By Risdall, which focused on content marketing. In this video version of the presentation, Risdall’s Tracy Henry, Senior Marketing Manager, spoke about how to amplify your content across various Internet channels to get the most out of your digital marketing initiatives.   What is Content Amplification? Content amplification can be defined simply as the marketing of your marketing materials. The reason to do this is

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Risdall Content Marketing

How to Use Google Analytics to Properly Analyze Your Content Marketing

In November, Risdall put on a live seminar called, Growth Powered by Risdall, which focused on content marketing. The topics included content strategy, content curation, content creation, content amplification, content optimization, and analyzing your content’s performance. In this portion of the seminar, Risdall’s Marketing Manager, Beth Varela, explains three tactics: How to apply the right metrics to your content How to use secondary dimensions in Google analytics to attribute metrics to content How to assign the right goals to each piece of content in your content marketing initiatives Content Marketing and the Buyer’s Journey Content marketing is like any other

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Mobile WebAward Image

Risdall’s Clients Honored with 5 Best in Industry Awards in 2014 Mobile WebAwards

Congratulations to Risdall and our clients! The results of the 2014 Mobile WebAwards competition are in, and Risdall’s clients received five Best in Industry awards! On top of the awards, Risdall was named an Outstanding Mobile Interactive Developer for taking home five awards this year. These wins demonstrate the talent of Risdall’s expert web development team, which stays on top of the trends in traditional and mobile website design. “It is an honor to be considered a digital leader among web design agencies in the Twin Cities,” said CEO Ted Risdall. “With changing communication comes changing technology, and we are

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Web Development Trends

Web Development Trends for 2015

Like many marketing practices, website development is an ever-changing field. To succeed in this field, designers need to constantly adapt to what consumers desire. We’ve looked at our clients’ requests and come up with three web development trends that designers can watch out for in 2015. Responsive is everything. In January, 55 percent of Internet access came via cell phones. With more people accessing websites on their smart phones, websites need to be responsive if you want visitors to get the most out of your site. All the buzz around responsive websites is because they adapt to whatever size screen

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Award-Winning Web Design

4 Elements for an Award-Winning Healthcare Website

Your website can give viewers their first impression of your company. And as we all know, a first impression is hard to change, so let’s make sure it’s a good one. Follow these four elements to set the foundation for an award-winning healthcare website that will be sure to leave a good impression. Big, Beautiful Pictures A picture is worth a thousand words, especially in the case of healthcare websites. The human brain can process images 60,000 times faster than text, and visitors often spend most of their time looking at photos on a page rather than reading paragraphs of

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Movember Risdall

Movember Moustaches’ Last Hoorah

Just as the Thanksgiving holiday has come and gone, so have Risdall’s Movember moustaches. Our team gathered donations and grew their moustaches for the entire month of November to raise awareness for men’s health. The moustaches serve as ice breakers to spark conversations on important issues that affect men, specifically mental health, prostate and testicular cancers. To spruce up the moustache season around the office, we held a few friendly competitions where employees voted on three different types of ‘staches: the most professional, the thickest ‘stache and the most minimal moustache. We had two more awards for “Highest Number of Donors”

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Risdall Thanksgiving

Feeling Thankful this Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving! Feeling thankful to so many and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it. 2014 represents our 42nd year in business, and I wanted give thanks for all that has made this possible, especially our clients. First, I am thankful for Risdallians. Fueled by an unmatched work ethic – plus jars of candy and scooter laps around the building – we have worked tirelessly this year to make a difference for our clients and our community. I am also thankful that we were able to give some of our time to pro bono projects

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Risdall Celebrates its Newest Higher Education Client

We’re celebrating a big win after learning The University of Texas at Tyler chose Risdall to be its long-term agency partner. The upcoming projects will involve all of the agency’s services, such as brand research, strategic positioning, online marketing and video production on the road to making UT Tyler the first choice for higher education in Texas. In the past, Risdall has worked with several schools in the higher education industry, including Brown College and McNally Smith College of Music, and we look forward to our work with the team at UT Tyler. Through extensive research, we’ve gained a full

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3 Tips from Taco Bell for Marketing to College Students

College students have been a primary market for Taco Bell for years. With the cheap tacos, late-night hours and witty humor on social media, Taco Bell has whole heartedly embraced its following. Here are three strategies that we can learn from the fast food mogul to garner a strong Gen Y following. Humor sells According to a survey by Chegg, college students recall humorous stories 80 percent better than their non-humorous alternatives. Whether it’s YouTube, window clings or radio spots, the marketers at Taco Bell are experts on using humor to develop the brand’s personality. Socialize on social  media Taco

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Risdall Movember

Movember moustaches keep growing at Risdall

The moustaches are showing and the donations are growing in our third week of the Movember fundraiser at Risdall. Our team has raised $680 so far, and with two weeks left, we’re on track to hit our goal of $1,000. Movember was created to spark conversations about health issues specific to men. For the month of November, participants grow and groom their moustaches, and only their moustaches, while gathering donations for their team. The neatly groomed moustaches unify participants, or Mo Bros, and provide an ice breaker for conversation topics that aren’t widely discussed. All donations support research for men’s

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Content Strategy

6 Steps for Content Marketing

As a full-service agency, Risdall continually works to develop each team’s skills, bringing out its full potential. Since we entered the digital world in 1993, we’ve continued to maximize our digital processes. With that in mind, we’ve created a six-step approach for content marketing at Risdall: strategy, curation, creation, optimization, amplification and measurement. Although we could create a blog post for each one of these steps, we decided to start with an overview of how each step fits into the process and works toward a client’s goals. Risdall’s 6 Steps for Content Marketing Strategy What Is It: Strategy means defining

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Movember Team Moustaches

Risdall sports Moustaches for Movember

From a simple After Eight to the intricate Connoisseur, gentlemen at Risdall will show off their moustaches of all sizes and styles this month in appreciation of Movember. Following the official rules of Movember, Risdallians started with a clean-shaven face on November 1. For the entire month, gentlemen, and women, will grow and groom their moustaches, transforming into true Mo Bros. Starting in Australia in 2003, the popular fundraiser was created to benefit men’s health issues by sparking discussions about health concerns and raising funds specifically for mental health, prostate and testicular cancers. The movement has grown to include 21 countries, and has

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Growth Powered by Risdall Rockets Cub Scout Recruitment

Risdall helped refresh Northern Star Council Boy Scouts’ brand and public image in the first year of its statewide Rocket Into Scouting recruitment event, culminating in a 43 percent enrollment increase from 2013 totals. In 2014, Northern Star Council strategically transformed Rocket Into Scouting from a multiple-date event into a single-time recruitment effort, where kindergarten through fifth grade boys who signed up for Cub Scouts and their families received a free model rocket to build and launch at the first pack meeting. Through the efforts of multiple Risdall services, Rocket Into Scouting enrolled 4,143 new Cub Scouts at over 700

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The Network Connect Explores the Future of Angel Investing

If you’re looking for the ideal area to invest, Minnesota is the place to be. With 248 unique businesses started between 2010 and 2013, investors have put a total of $247.7 million toward startups in Minnesota in the last four years. One factor encouraging investors both in and out of state is the Minnesota Angel Tax Credit program, which provides a 25 percent refundable tax credit for investors who put their money toward qualified small emerging businesses. The program has more than doubled since it started in 2010 with $7 million in credits. Four years later, the program increased funding and dispersed

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Risdall Creates Award-Winning Website for Colorado Symphony

Risdall shined a spotlight on the Colorado Symphony’s online presence with a new website, The site won Best Entertainment Website in the 2014 WebAwards, scoring 68 out of 70 points based on seven distinct criteria. “We wanted a dynamic website technology with a very rich set of features and capabilities that was also easy to use,” said Douglas Yost, director of information services at the Colorado Symphony. The Colorado Symphony wanted to clean up its site with a slick navigation menu, an easy-to-scan blog module and an eye-catching event calendar with pop-up descriptions. The orchestra wanted a website that

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Par Aide Presents Risdall with a Unique Gift

Risdall’s Wii golf course is now complete with two brand new golf ball washers from our valued partner, Par Aide. To honor our ongoing relationship, Par Aide presented the agency with two shiny, 4-foot-tall golf ball washers, but not just any ball washers. Par Aide took the time to match the Master Ensemble ball washer perfectly with Risdall’s signature purple, and converted the Deluxe Ensemble ball washer into a functioning lamp. At Risdall, we couldn’t help but remember the unforgettable scene from “A Christmas Story,” when old man Parker receives his prized leg lamp. In Mr. Parker’s words, “It’s indescribably

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Risdall’s Clients Honored in International Competition for Outstanding Websites

The unique relationships between Risdall and our clients inspire us to create superior website designs that meet all of our clients’ needs… and win awards too. This year, 19 of those websites went on to win awards in the international WebAwards competition. On top of that, the Web Marketing Association recognized six of those victorious websites as best in their categories, meaning they had the highest score compared with all other submissions. Congratulations to all the winners! We pride ourselves on providing our clients with the latest technology and a team of industry-leading experts who love what they do, and when

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Use a Vivid Vision to Look at your Business through a Crystal Ball

  The Vistage Executive Summit joined Minnesota’s brightest leaders with some of the world’s most talented speakers to share their knowledge about innovation in business. One speaker, Cameron Herold, explained his concept of creating a vivid vision – an activity to align your team with the future of your company. The CEO knows exactly where he wants his company to end up, but if his vision isn’t shared with employees, he’ll be viewed as the guy dancing alone in the video above. This is where a vivid vision comes in. A vivid vision is a detailed description of the future of your company.

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scroll down content strategy

Are Huge Images Right For a B2B Website?

Many readers of online magazines have noticed a shift lately – sites like Medium, Fast Company, and The Great Discontent are all shifting to huge images that often force users to scroll before reading content.

The writers at Digiday speculate that the trend is due to an evolving understanding of how visitors come to websites:

“Large photos are often used by publishers as a way of providing texture to a homepage and making a brand impression,” Digiday writer Ricardo Bilton wrote. “But with most traffic now coming to article pages, it means article pages have to do more of the heavy lifting of homepages.”

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content curation

How to Simplify Your Content Curation


What is it?

Many brands start their web marketing strategies with content curation.

Content curation is the process of organizing and displaying information about a particular topic. Although you can curate your own content, most online curation involves content generated by other people.

Content curation is not a new, or uniquely digital strategy. Museums, anthologies and galleries are forms of curation.

In the digital world content curation can consist of sharing links to other people’s content on social media, Buzzfeed-style lists, and roundup posts, among other things.

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SEO Tips

SEO Trends in 2014

Recent changes in search engines and other emerging online trends have led to a number of new developments in SEO.

While most of these concepts aren’t ground-breaking or brand new, they’re more important than ever in establishing and maintaining a concrete presence online. If you haven’t optimized your site for mobile, integrated your social media efforts with SEO, or shifted your content strategy, jump on board now to keep up with the trends and your online visibility intact.
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Risdall Marketing Agency

Risdall Signs 20 New Accounts in Q1 2014

It was a strong start to 2014 at Risdall, with the agency signing on 20 new accounts in the first quarter.

Many of these clients are focused on business-to-consumer marketing, and were looking for an agency that could deliver fully-integrated strategic campaigns.
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What is Native Advertising?

Native advertising is a catchall term for targeted paid marketing tactics.

The oldest form of native advertising is an advertorial, like Oglivy’s “Guinness Guide to Oysters.”

Oyster Ad
Native Advertising is a nebulous concept:

  1. There is no real consensus on what the term means.
  2. Most definitions are so broad as to encompass every form of paid digital advertising except for basic banner ads.

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Advice For Graduating Designers and Copywriters

I recently had the privilege of participating in a Minnesota Interactive Marketing Association networking event.

This MIMA speed networking event consisted of about 30 students and aspiring marketers who got 2-3 minutes each to speak with 30 marketing professionals, including myself.

A third of the would-be marketers seemed terrified, but all of them braved through it. It was a fun event for everyone (I hope).

I found myself giving the same six pieces of advice over and over:

1. Learn how to position yourself.

Most of the seniors unnecessarily limited their job searches because they had a very narrow idea of what they wanted to do.

  • Are you a copywriter with social media experience? Look for content strategy and community manager jobs.
  • Are you a business major with a communications minor? Check the project management and public relations listings.

The easiest thing to do is look at all of the open positions at an agency or marketing department and ask yourself whether you can do a job with minimal training.

For example, a writer isn’t going to learn software development overnight, but he or she can probably figure out basic social media and project management skills if necessary.

2. Get your portfolio together.

The first step to getting a marketing job is learning how to effectively market yourself.

The number of graduating seniors without updated portfolios almost drove me to hysterics. Read More