Kate Spade and Templates and Sales, Oh My!

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Quick announcement: Kate Spade is hosting a 75% off sale right now!

Why is that important? Well, for starters, their purses are adorable and even cuter when they are cheaper. Secondly, it gives us a chance to look at something “new” on their website. At this point you are probably scratching your head and wondering how a sale would be considered new. Stay with me, I’ll explain.

Kate Spade is a luxury item. It is very rare that luxury items go on such a substantial discount. I mean Louboutin doesn’t even allow their shoes to be put on sale, rather it is rumored they burn them. Ouch right?

So, this means this discount section is new! Which is interesting because this section looks the exact same as all of their other section. That is what I want to talk about today. I want to discuss Kate Spade’s template.

A template is defined as “anything that determines or serves as a pattern; a model.” Kate Spade’s flowing cursive handwriting and strategic pops of color are part of their template. Do you think every time their editor wants to run a new print ad they start totally from scratch? Nope.

Instead, they pre-create their fonts, logo and layout. That way they can use them over and over. It also cuts down on time. It is kind of like starting a race halfway through instead of at the beginning.

This new discount section the literal example of this race. Here they are introducing something amazing without having to stress out over the specifics. They are able to focus on the merchandise and customers, like myself, instead of spending all their time trying to re-create their effortlessly classy web template.

I told you I would explain didn’t I? This new sale exhibits their existing template. Just because the sale is revolutionary doesn’t mean Kate Spade would go against their branding. They have an image that represents who they are as a company and worked very hard to perfect it.

Their template ensures that they keep that brand uniform. It also makes it easier and faster to post new pages and ads. Almost all major brands have and use templates. Why wouldn’t they? They are almost as fabulous as the products they showcase.

Notes: The 75% off sale ends October 28th. Go to their website and check it out! http://surprise.katespade.com/on/demandware.store/Sites-KateSale-Site/en_US/Search-Show?cgid=ks-view-all&010=All

Barnes and Noble Content Strategy

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From doing our Social Media Audit on Barnes & Noble, we found that they do a great job with their top three social media accounts (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter), website and blogs. Their journey is getting an “A+” from us; however, with a little more updating and research, they will be at the top of their class.

Barnes & Noble is a longstanding marketing titan in the book-selling world. You need a book about hair bows? Their website is just the place for you. You want more information and articles about newly released books? Go check out their Facebook and Twitter accounts. You need to watch an informative video? You might need to go somewhere else.

That is where Barnes & Noble is lacking. Their smaller, less followed accounts, such as YouTube, Vine and Google +, all need to be developed and cross channel promoted.

However, the content that they do post is gold. They successfully keep readers updated with book releases, author interviews and appearances, and fun “fluff” articles. They crowd source on Facebook and curate from author’s Twitter pages. Barnes & Noble publishes at least once a day and almost always include a CTA to assist the reader back to their main website.

Our only recommendation for them in this aspect would be to interact with their audience and post more on their less popular accounts! Between the two of us, we both “tweeted” them and never heard back. The same thing happens on their Facebook channel. Yes they crowd source on their page but they almost never reply to any of the comments left by their consumers.

So overall, we found that Barnes & Noble knows what they are doing. This Fortune 500 Company has been the top selling bookstore in the nation and hopefully will continue this legacy. They aren’t perfect though and that is why they need to listen to more social media experts.

Talk to you later~ Jordyn and Brianna

You better watch that Tone!

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Years ago, when I rocked braces and actually tried to dress up for school, I sat in the back of my high school English class pouring a textbook entry about “Tone”. From that point on I’ll admit I never fully understood it. Last week I found myself in the same exact boat while learning about Social Media Audits.

Sure, I can tell you the definition of tone no problem but what does it really mean? Lucky for you, I’ve researched it a bit; I found that tone is one of the easiest concepts to understand. I’m going to blame my confusion on the fact that we were looking for the tone in old English poetry. As beautiful as it is, nobody really KNOWS what is going on.

Anyway, tone is how you say something; not necessarily what you say. For example, remember when you would say something to your mom and she would tell you to change your attitude? That was tone! Whatever message you were trying to convey could have been said in a different way. Your tone made her think you were getting sassy, even though you might not have been.

To a company, the tone they exude can make or break their relationship with customers. Let’s say Company A wants to appeal to the middle class housewife. Their tone should probably be more conversational and trendy in nature.

Now, let’s say Company B wants clients who are very “hipster” and are 18 to 24. Company B should not use a professional tone. Instead, they should be more informal and maybe even use some slang.

The tone a company uses should be consistent on all their platforms. Everything from their Facebook account to their emails they send out should have that tone. They can’t expect to gain loyalty if they aren’t loyal to what they are presenting.

Lets pretend Company B suddenly decides make a huge campaign to market the launch of their new coffee product. Unfortunately for them, they also decide to go against their uniform tone. This new campaign is strict business and its personality is all off. The CEO is surprised to find that all their hard work is failing. We, the PR practitioners, are not. After all, we know how important a company’s tone really is.

It amazes me now how difficult I found this simple concept all those years ago. I guess poetry can do that to you because as it turns out, tone is so easy to understand.