What are you doing with your marketing budget? An EOFY checklist for marketers

For marketers, end of financial year (EOFY) can be crazy but exciting. It’s like a spring clean for your business! At Sketch Corp, we view it as an opportunity for business owners and marketers to reflect on the past 12 months and take a serious look at their marketing budget. This is the perfect time to assess the year’s performance and consider things like: how much was spent? What worked and what didn’t? What was the result?

It’s also a stressful time. The lead-up to June 30 sees many people scrabbling to get their ducks in a row and figure out what to do with any leftover marketing budget before the clock runs out. The stress doesn’t stop there. Next, you’ll need to plan the next 12 months’ spending and pull together your marketing budget forecast. This usually means having to plead your case for the extra cash you’ll need for next year’s campaigns and activity.

Is your jaw clenched just thinking about how much you need to get done? Don’t worry!

We’ve put together an essential EOFY checklist for marketers:

  1. What does the data tell you?

The first thing you need to do is look at what your data’s telling you, so you can work out what’s worth continuing to invest in and where you can pull money from. The best way to do this is to look at the results/ROI on individual channels. For SEO, find out how much traffic was driven to your website. For EDMs, how many were opened and what was the click rate? What was your engagement on social media like? If engagement is difficult to pinpoint, think about how business fared overall for the period of time you used that channel. Remember: engagement and traffic are amazing indicators, but make sure you look at your revenue as well as leads. What you learn about your business or department here should play a strong role in shaping your marketing budget.

  1. What does your next financial year look like?

So you’ve reviewed last year, fabulous. You need to look back to understand your future direction more clearly. Now it’s time to work out what your marketing team needs to achieve over the following 12 months and plot a strategy. Look at your competitors – are they achieving what you want to achieve? How? EOFY is when you need to work out your goals, action plan and timeline to develop a clear and realistic budget for the next financial year.

  1. Has the market changed? What about your business?

The market is one of the most integral parts of marketing. You need to assess it objectively to identify overarching themes and key trends. There could be a new section of your audience that you’re missing. Are clients still coming from the old channels or do you need to expand your reach? Consider the landscape of your business. If you have more competitors now, you need to think about how you’ll compete. It’s so important to work out what will be influencing your marketing activity and how. Maybe your business has grown and it’s time to look at partnering with a marketing agency.

  1. Create a marketing plan and a calendar planner

The EOFY for marketers is the best time to create or review your marketing plan. Look at the information you’ve gathered so far. Consider the data from your results, your marketing budget and how the market or your business has evolved. All of this will help your plan take shape. Then, create a calendar planner – seriously, do it! Create and keep goals, manage multiple campaigns effectively and efficiently, and keep everyone in your team on the same page.


Do you need help with your 2018-19 marketing activity? Get in touch with our team.

– Sketch Corp.

The art of the brief: getting the most out of your marketing agency

So you’ve found the perfect marketing agency to work with. Fabulous! That’s the hard part. Now to establish some clear boundaries and processes for working together.

You must already have a connection to have agreed to team up in the first place. But no matter how good your rapport, no agency will ever just be able to bring to life what’s in your head without you telling them explicitly.

An essential element of this is nailing the briefing process. If the marketing agency brief is good, the work will be too. No matter what the project, each brief must be – above all – clear about what the project a) is and b) is trying to achieve. Briefing well is how you end being presented with beautiful creative that meets/exceeds your expectations.

Producing a good marketing agency brief is an underrated art form. Brilliant marketing and design work stems as much from the effectiveness of the brief as much as it does from the skills and experience of the team you’ve engaged.

If a marketing agency brief is vague and wishy-washy with instructions like ‘Copy this, but better’, it is unlikely to produce great work. Clarity and context is key.

Good marketing agency briefs save clients money

It’s entirely worth your while to spend time getting the marketing agency brief right. This is because it leads to better work AND it saves you money (and untold frustration) in the long run. How? Because you won’t have to pay your agency extra for endless rounds of revisions.

So what makes a good marketing agency brief and how can you replicate it?

Essential elements of any marketing agency brief:

1. Description
What is the project?

2. Background
Provides context. Why this project? Why now?

3. Target market
Describe the audience in as much detail as possible

4. Objective
What are you hoping to achieve from this project?

5. Messaging
Is this locked in or does your agency need to develop it?

6. Key benefits for audience
Why would someone purchase this product or sign up for this service?

7. Realistic timeframes

8. Tone of voice
Adjectives for how you want people to feel

marketing agency brief

Best case scenario: a creative brief is a document created through initial meetings, interviews, readings and discussions between a client and designer before any work begins. Throughout the project, the creative brief continues to in form and guide the work. Here’s where you’ll find the industry best practice guide.

It’s important to understand who’s at the table. For some people, the idea of sitting down and verbally briefing only to then write up a written brief feels like double-handling.

For others, only a series of discussions and meetings before having everything written up in detail and signed off will do.

In our experience, the best marketing agency briefs are a combination of initial meetings, interviews and signed off documents confirming that everyone ‘gets it’ and knows what is expected of them. Giving all stakeholders the opportunity to revise and ask questions is essential. Once everyone knows what’s expected of them, the great work can begin.

Sketch Corp.




Hiring a marketing agency for website design? Ask these 7 questions first.

Sketch Corp. was recently engaged by a fabulous new client who sadly has had a shocking website design experience with another marketing agency.

Despite paying more than $30,000 for this new website, our client was left with a website design that was inferior in many ways to the existing website they were trying to improve upon. In the end, the business owners were too embarrassed to send the website live.

Even worse, the client was advised that too much time had already gone into the project and that, unless they paid more, the issues wouldn’t be fixed.

To say that our client was stressed out by the situation is an understatement.

Why we’re also upset by this website design palaver

As a Brisbane marketing agency that prides itself not only on the quality of our design but also on the quality of our relationships, we hate hearing about these scenarios.

Unfortunately it happens more often than you might think and, when it does, the industry suffers because another client walks away thinking that marketing agencies aren’t worth it.

Then when that client goes to look for a new agency, they’re on the back foot and filled with scepticism. Honestly, we can’t tell you how many times we’ve met with potential new clients who start the conversation with something to the effect of: “I’ve used marketing agencies in the past, but they’ve been no good. I got hit with large bills and had no idea what they were for. They said they could create content and then asked me to write everything.” And so it goes.

On the bright side

The good news is that not all Brisbane marketing agencies are like the one that handed in a shoddy website design and charged top dollar for the pleasure.

But how can you tell going in which agency is going to deliver the goods?

We’ve put together a list of key considerations when selecting a marketing agency for the specific purpose of website design and development:

1. Be wary of upfront payment demands

Watch out for an agency that asks you to pay for an entire website upfront without providing alternative options. Alarm bells should be ringing.

We can’t believe it ourselves, but there are some agencies out there insisting that there will be one invoice and one only – before a project even commences.

If you already know and trust the agency, it’s fine to pay them upfront for a big project. But if you’ve only just started working together, it’s a concern.

Paying upfront doesn’t give you much room to move if you don’t like your new website design. If they’ve misinterpreted the brief or simply oversold themselves, then you’ve already handed over the full amount and chances are they’re not going to be as flexible with changes.

More reasonable payment terms for larger website design projects ($15,000 and upwards) are a 50% deposit and 50% on completion and approval.

Another reasonable approach is to have ‘milestone payment’ terms. For example, 50% deposit, 25% on presentation of website design and 25% on approval.

2) Look closely at the website design process

Unless you’re working to the Agile delivery method (an approach favoured by bigger businesses that attracts a higher website price tag), we recommend investigating the agency’s website design process before you sign on the dotted line.

Will the agency seek your approval along the way or only at the end? Will copy be approved separately? Will design be approved before development begins?

To avoid projects exceeding scope or ending up with a site you’re not happy with, you want to see ‘approvals’ appear throughout the process. That is, your approval.

It’s important that your agency not start developing your website too early in the process. Copy and design should always be approved before coding and functionality are added.

Why? Well, our website developer always uses an analogy that we find useful.

Developing a website is like building a house. You want the draftsman or architect’s plans to be set in stone before you start laying foundations and going ahead with wiring and plumbing. Those things are so much harder and more expensive to undo. By the same token, changing a developed website is much more difficult than getting the design right in the first place.

3) Ask about systems for client review

There are several programs available that allow agencies to share designs with clients prior to delivery of the entire UAT site.

For example, we use InVision (https://www.invisionapp.com/) to share the progress of our designs with our clients. This allows clients to experience what their website is going to look like before it’s developed and to mark up their feedback.

Applications like InVision allow you, the client, to see what’s going as design progresses. This ensures that you like the ‘direction’ your new site is heading in and helps avoid costly redevelopment fees.

4) Meet the team in person

Ask if you can meet the team who will be working on your project before you sign on the dotted line. This will help you get a feel for the experience and expertise of the creatives at your agency.

The fact is that some agencies have a killer sales team who are super-polished and know how to give a cracking pitch.

This is all well and good, but 9 times out of 10 the sales guy or gal is not going to be working on your website personally. They’re simply selling it to you. That’s why it’s important that you feel comfortable with the creatives behind your project.

 5) Call a couple of their clients

You would always conduct a reference check on potential in-house employees, and there’s no reason why you can’t do the same for a new marketing agency.

The agency should happily give you a few names and numbers. When you do get in touch with them, ask for an honest account of how they have found the experience of working together.


6) Past work speaks volumes

Agencies always have their favourite projects – Sketch Corp. included. If you request ‘an’ example of your marketing agency’s work, it’s likely that that’s what you’re going to see – that project they absolutely nailed.

Our recommendation is to check for consistency. Ask for approximately 10 examples of projects completed for businesses like yours. This is a good idea whether you’re a budding entrepreneur, an established B2B operation or a professional services provider.

It’s not necessarily a negative thing if the marketing agency hasn’t actually worked with a business like yours before – as long as you know about it sooner rather than later.

7) Who’s writing the copy?

The answer to this question is good to get out on the table early (before you sign anything).

Over the years, we’ve been surprised to learn how many supposedly ‘full-service’ marketing agencies ask clients to provide their own website copy. Guidance, yes – but fully developed, web-appropriate copy? This should not fall to clients who do not have a copywriting/digital marketing background.

While it’s totally reasonable to provide subject matter intel and insights via a website copy brief, we do not expect clients to create and edit their website copy.

Creating effective website copy is a niche discipline. Essentially, it must work with your website design. Copy can inform design and vice-versa. Neither can be created in silo. Tweaks to copy and design are regularly made along the way to get the best out of both.

While we don’t recommend it, if you are creating all your own website copy we suggest you also think carefully about how this is going to work with website design. How will you approach changes to both if required?

Keeping these 7 considerations in mind should prevent you from making expensive mistakes when selecting a marketing agency to design your new website.

For more advice about briefing in your website design to a marketing agency, get in touch with our team.

Sketch Corp.

8 design Instagram accounts loved by creatives

Even the most experienced designers look around for fresh inspiration when starting a new project. We certainly do. Our favourite source of stimulus these days is the creative community on Instagram. This channel has emerged as the best visual medium for showing off fantastic design and getting your own work noticed too.


At Sketch Corp, we have our favourite design Instagram accounts and hashtags we follow religiously to see what’s happening globally.

There are some amazing ones out there! From accounts focused on showcasing the best of the best in agency, to those that unearth prodigious student talent, these design Instagram accounts showcase design greatness to their enormous networks.

Any given day of the week, you can scroll through these feeds and find a killer logo, perfect packaging or a suite of branding so on the money it almost brings a tear to a designer’s eye.

We discover fresh inspiration almost daily, but here are the 8 most hearted accounts we return to again and again:

1. @logos.ai

With 132k followers, this design Instagram account shares logos and design inspiration from talented designers across the globe.

 Logos design instagram account 1


2. @branding_design

An inspiring feed that shares creative ideas for designers and business to its 78.1K followers.

Branding design instagram account


 3. @thedesignkids

As a global Graphic Design Organisation, @thedesignkids supports new talent and emerging designers with posts shown to 100k followers.

 Design kids


4. @thedesigntip

With some 720k followers, @thedesigntip provides daily design inspiration in the form of visual art, branding and illustrations.

 Design tip instagram account


5. @shillington_

Shillington offers world-class graphic design courses in several countries around the world and they have plenty of inspiration to draw from for its 18.5k followers.

 Shillinton design instagram account


6. #behance

Follow this hashtag on Insta for design delights from one of the world’s biggest portfolio hosting websites.

 Behance design instagram account


7.  @thedailytype

This global curator of daily typography posts distributes type inspiration to its community of 517k.



8. @sketch_corp

A humble plug for our own evolving Instagram account, which has 9.3k followers and counting.

Sketch Corp design instagram account 


These are the design Instagram accounts we’re loving right now to get our creative juices flowing. For more insights into the growing role of Instagram in marketing, read our take on the humble hashtag.







Where typography is heading in 2018

Typography in graphic design will be enormously important in branding this year. Again. Here’s why.

The reason typography reigns right now are largely due to UX constraints and the current trend towards responsive design, which dictates that everything must be easily scalable for different specs and platforms.


With this limitation here to stay, designers are rummaging in their bag of old-school tricks for new inspo – and they’re falling back in love with fonts.


Typography defined

Typography is the art of arranging type in design. Essential elements of strong typography include:

  • Font choice
  • Colour scheme
  • Spacing (kerning – closeness of letters – and leading – closeness of lines)
  • Hierarchy (what text is given weight and why)
  • Formatting (bold, italics and underlining)


The typeface a designer selects and how they place words in a layout is crucial to visual impact, readability and sending the right message. Designers know this. They think very long and hard about it.


User experience and typography are closely linked. Having a fantastic UX necessarily requires a pared-back design where bells and whistles are removed. Often leaving only the text to play with.


Micro-trends in typography we’ve spotted:

Geometric sans serifs (that aren’t Helvetica)

Until recently, the accepted thinking was that certain fonts are easier to digest in long blocks of copy – namely serif fonts like Times New Roman or Garamond. That’s all changed now with the rise of the new-wave Geometric Sans Serif fonts favoured by digital disruptors.


More and more well-crafted geometric sans serifs are becoming widely available. Prime examples are the ‘LL Brown’ and ‘LL Circular’ fonts used by Air BnB, and ‘FF Clan’ used by Uber.


‘There is a bold clarity and honesty to such fonts that have now been used by many large corporations to communicate the simplicity and openness that their brand team requires,’ says Lee Fasciani, founder and director of Territory Projects

Geometric Sans serif typography

Hand lettering

You can’t beat the personal touch and artisanal appeal of a hand-drawn font (or indeed a font that looks like it’s been applied with a stamp pad like the below example). Beloved by hipsters and wine-makers, they add a touch of humanity to any screen.

Hand lettering typography


Creative spacing

Rotating letters a few degrees and playing around with kerning and leading are a surprisingly effective way to communicate a brand personality. Look at these zany pig examples below. Are they not imperfectly perfect!?

Creative spacing typography


Negative space

A personal favourite of Sketch Corp, negative space type is all about leaving something out – even just one simple stroke – to create a whole new meaning.

Check out our Art Director Carolina’s logo for a new Brisbane property development. Something is missing. Or is it? Beautifully minimal and whisper-subtle. And the fact that evoke means ‘to conjure up a memory’ and you then are invited to ‘conjure up’ a ‘k’? Sublime.

Evoke Branding typography


Chaotic fonts

A close cousin of hand-drawn fonts, chaotic fonts are irregular on purpose. Letter heights and stroke widths vary wildly, imbuing any brand with a creative, free-thinking, expressive quality. Lorna Jane is a good example of a brand that uses chaoticism to great effect.

Chaotic fonts typography



Sketch Corp.







Website considerations for budding entrepreneurs

Over the years, our agency has worked with many bright-eyed entrepreneurs with BIG ideas for changing the world and making millions. Usually via an online business that disrupts industry norms.


We love these guys! Their enthusiasm is infectious.


Most of their ideas involve very BIG websites. In fact, the success of their business usually hinges on it. When planning these sorts of sites, we’ve noticed a pattern in expectation versus reality.


We wanted to warn the entrepreneur community at large before they start thinking launching ‘the next UBER’ is easy (or cheap). There are serious website considerations. 


The fact is, the simplest and most beautiful websites often have a lot of complexity going on in the back end. A gorgeously minimal, high-functioning website can belie a huge cost, often requiring a team of very talented website developers.

Based on our experience working with start-up clients on ‘big concept’ ideas, there are several ways to approach this business model.

Option 1 – minimum viable product approach

This approach involves starting small with a ‘pilot’ program and growing over time if demand and profitability are established.

  • Clients must ask themselves, what is the absolute minimum functionality a website needs to start making money? 
  • They should make a list of requirements and implement the smallest possible functional website for the least expense in a reasonable timeframe. Then go live and start making money.  


The project might roll out as follow:

  1. After a series of discussions, a website designer and developer put together ‘wireframe’ sketches. These illustrate the various screens of the system and how they link together.
  2. Client reviews these wireframes to make sure the website is exactly what they want.
  3. Designer creates Photoshop Design Files (PSDs) and manages artwork approval. At this point, no further changes can be made until the website goes live.
  4. Developer selects a stable system that will produce the desired outcome in the least amount of time.
  5. Developer implements the website as per requirements; UAT (User Acceptance Training) commences and any bugs are fixed.
  6. Website goes live and simultaneously the client starts marketing the business.
  7. The money starts coming in and the client weighs up whether the proceeds and impact warrant further investment.


If the concept proves viable, the next step is to measure how successful the website is – is it a success or a failure?


In the case that it’s a failure, at least the investment was minimal.


If it’s a success or has potential, then it’s time start making smalliterative changes to improve the website. Any changes should be driven by what the market wants or by analytics and research, not simply by what the website owner thinks would be a good idea.


The iterative changes should ideally be implemented one at a time to gauge effectiveness.

Option 1 is typically favoured by small online businesses


Option 2 – go in big and invest heavily in the business, take a huge gamble and see if it pays off

This is the large-scale investment approach modelled by brands such as Youfoodz. It requires that the client has a clear strategy for how the system is going to function and make money and how long that will take. In other words, a comprehensive business plan.

Client checklist:

  • Very large budget (i.e. upwards of $200,000)
  • Wish list of website requirements
  • Extensive market research already conducted
  • Professional software developers retained (i.e. people who have proven experience creating custom systems who can build you a very high-quality system if you pay them enough)

Website Wireframe

Here’s how this type of approach is usually rolled out:

  1. When the system is finally ready and perfect, release the website live to the public
  2. Run a large marketing campaign across multiple media streams. Social marketing, influencer endorsements, billboards, PR, TV, print, YouTube – anything to get as much traction as possible.
  3. Be prepared to shoulder big losses in the first 12 months due to massive initial outlays for development costs, advertising, sampling and incidentals – with the express goal of getting as many people using the system as possible (with an emphasis on repeat customers).
  4. Start recouping your investment and generating profit at a much later date.
  5. If the business is a big success, consider permanently employing the developers to work on the system full time.

Option 2 is favoured by larger businesses with external backing and a big budget who are prepared to take on such a big risk.


There is one last approach, which typically rolls out as follows. However, we strongly advise against going down this road:

Option 3 – one we have never seen work successfully.
  1. Start with some rough, poorly researched ideas (or occasionally some well-thought-through ideas that are ahead of their time). Don’t bother with a business plan.
  2. Copy someone else’s ideas and tweak them ever so slightly. Typically: “I want a Facebook clone, but for XYZ.” Or, “I want a Groupon clone, but for ABC.”
  3. Have a few vague requirements that the developer can’t lock down properly. (Note: developers need to know exactly what they are going to build in detail before they commence. And, there needs to be 100% agreement between client and developer on what those requirements are).
  4. Start with a certain budget and expect that that’s all you will ever have to pay, then invest that entire budget in the initial build.

    This is contrary to how web development projects actually work, particularly with custom development. The reality is that you’ll spend a large amount upfront, and then spend medium-to-large chunks again and again later down the track. 

    If you spend most of your budget in the initial build, you will likely go way over budget in the long run, or the project will fail.

  5. Get a developer to start building the system without making sure they are suitable for the job and have created similar systems before.
  6. Start seeing the system come together and then realise there are unforeseen issues you hadn’t thought of. Request expensive changes.
  7. See other ideas around and try to integrate them into your website as it is being built.
  8. Try to do too many things too quickly, particularly at the beginning of the project.
  9. Wanting the system to be absolutely perfect before you approve it for launch (the reality is that no website is ever perfect. The best websites are ever-evolving systems that improve over time. Trying to be perfect pre-launch, before you know how the target market will respond, delays the project and adds to costs).
  10. Adding features to the website simply because that’s what a competitor does.
  11. Wanting to add features because they ‘seem’ like a good idea without research or market demand to support these (what often ends up happening is that the client requests something (for example, a forum) as an extra bonus feature on the website, then the developer spends ages implementing this perfectly. Then, once the website is live, only 5 people use the forum – making it a pointless, expensive feature that should never have been there in the first place).

Option 3 just gets worse and worse.


These are some of the risks and problems that plague many projects, especially in custom development work. 

Most small business owners are unaware of these risks and potential problems going. They generally tend to make the same mistakes, which causes headaches at best and huge stress/loss of money at worst.


Remember, forewarned is forearmed.


Sketch Corp.

How to choose your marketing agency wisely

When you have a business and things are going well, there may come a time when you can no longer grow it on your own.


This is when partnering with a marketing agency starts to look like a very attractive option.


A monthly retainer or ad hoc arrangement is the perfect solution when your business is too big for appearances not to matter, but too small to have a marketing department in-house.


With so many agencies around (all looking pretty slick), it can be hard to know which marketing agency will a) deliver the strongest ROI and b) have the best chemistry with your business.


These are the 7 things we would look for if we were you:
  1. A marketing agency that practises what they preach
    Marketing is a real shape-shifter of an industry – fast paced and constantly evolving. When considering a marketing agency, make sure they’re completely across today’s best practices and methodologies.

    They should be doing everything they say you should do.

    For example, if you want to turn your Instagram feed into a lead-generating tool that showcases your work or compels followers to buy your products, look for an agency with a killer Instagram account.

    Similarly, if your agency tells you to continually put out awesome content but they rarely blog or post anything themselves, how will they do it for you?At a bare minimum, any marketing agency contenders should have a mobile-responsive site that is optimised for SEO, and a strong presence on social media.

  2. Someone who stands up to due diligence.
    We read recently that in 2008 (pre-GFC) a well-known London banker narrowly escaped investing a fortune in Bernie Madoff’s doomed Ponzi scheme.

    In seduction mode, Madoff had tried to dazzle this guy by inviting him out on his lavish yacht and buddying up to him.

    When the banker demurred and insisted on doing his due diligence first, Bernie backed off quickly. He was arrested not long after.

    The moral of the story is that anyone can talk a big game, but a proven track record of achievement is more important.  The more you can uncover about the experience of past clients, the better.

    Any marketing agency worth their salt should be proud to provide you with recent case studies, analytics reports from previous campaigns, and other metrics that give credence to the claims they make.

  3. A marketing agency with the right mix of skills
    What is it that you can’t do that you’re hoping your agency can? Design, copy, web, social advertising? Not all marketing agencies are ‘full service’, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. After all, it’s hard for companies to be good at everything!

    For example, if no one on your team is a ‘comfortable’ writer, then selecting an agency with strong copy skills is essential.

    The same applies with digital advertising, which is a very niche skill nowadays.If you’re investing $ on digital advertising (i.e. Google AdWords), look for a marketing agency that’s all over this discipline – and has the stats to prove it.

  4. Similar approaches to getting things done
    How often do last-minute, unexpected tasks pop up in your business? If the answer is ‘all the time’, a nimbler, more flexible marketing agency may be right for you. One that can quickly roll with the punches.

    The beauty of working with a small, responsive team is they can quickly immerse themselves in your business and work with you closely.

    In our experience, it’s much easier to deploy a small team to come to your office for briefs and brainstorms than trying to mobilise a large one.

    If, however, your business has a very structured way of doing things and a long-term strategy in place where everything’s well organised in advance, a bigger agency might be a better fit.

  5. Someone who gets your target market
    A good marketing agency will quickly identify what channels are best suited to your objectives and your audience.

    If your audience is young, they’re probably frolicking on the ‘younger’ socials – i.e. Snapchat and Instagram – and following various influencers.

    If this is the case for your business, your best fit will be a marketing agency that can demonstrate proven results for clients on these channels.

  6. Similar communication styles
    Transparent, timely communication is the foundation of any healthy business relationship. Your marketing agency shouldn’t leave you hanging for weeks and you should be able to at least get them on the phone when you want to (within reason).

    We’re not saying you have to be on the phone every day with your agency, but we strongly believe in keeping the lines of communication open. Mainly to ensure that campaigns are rolled out properly and deadlines are met.

    When you are considering marketing agencies, be wary of the ones that do not get back to you in a reasonable time frame or did not provide a customised response.

    If you’re the type of person who needs following up, think about whether the account manager has the experience and organisational skills to handle that.marketing agency partnership

  7. Similar values
    As with all great relationships, you don’t have to have everything in common… just the important things. Sounds lofty, but it’s so crucial that your company values are in sync with the marketing agency you choose. After all, it’s a partnership.

    For instance, if your business is big on CSR and giving back, seek out an agency that believes in those things too. If you value honesty and transparency, don’t choose an agency that adopts a ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy. If you don’t know what the agency’s values are, just ask them!

-Sketch Corp.












All change: how Facebook’s shock announcement will affect your social media marketing

It’s official. Effective immediately, Facebook will drastically alter the formula that determines what appears on everyone’s news feeds.

There’s nothing new about algorithm changes. But, the shocking thing about this announcement is that Facebook will no longer be promoting paid posts. Thus shifting the goalposts for social media marketing forever.

“Recently we’ve gotten feedback from our community that public content – posts from businesses, brands and media – is crowding out the personal moments that lead us to connect more with each other,” Facebook Founder and Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg posted last week.

Vanity Fair called it a ‘media divorce’.

“I’m changing the goal I give our product teams from focusing on helping you find relevant content to helping you have more meaningful social interactions,” Zuckerberg went on to say.

Instead of pushing content from media publishers, FB will now return to its roots and favour content from friends and family.

This surprise move – which saw the share price of Facebook plummet overnight – is part of the platform’s efforts to address concerns about the ‘commercially curated’ influence it has on people’s lives.

It’s great news for humans, but will leave many brands scrambling without a strategy.

3 specific types of posts will be de-prioritised
  1. Posts that solely push people to buy a product or install an app
  2. That push people to enter promotions and sweepstakes with no real context
  3. That reuse the exact same content from ads

Facebook says these new volume and content controls for promotional posts will help people see more of what they want from Pages (that is Business/Company pages).


Expect to see less of these types of posts:


Facebook posts


It’s not to say that branded content is over, but it will become less visible (perhaps even tucked away in a standalone ‘Explore’ tab – one idea floated by WordStream founder Larry Kim) and organic reach will be tougher to obtain.

As has been predicted for a while now by industry insiders, prime Facebook News Feed spots will become more expensive to purchase.

What’s this got to do with your business’ Facebook presence?

The long story short is that businesses currently posting purely promotional creative should expect their organic distribution to fall significantly over time.

Instead of prioritising posts based on comments and shares, Facebook will now favour content it thinks will lead to meaningful “back-and-forth discussion”.

Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s Head of News Feed, said:

“Because space in News Feed is limited, showing more posts from friends and family and updates that spark conversation means we’ll show less public content, including videos and other posts from publishers or businesses.”

What you can do about it

The crux of this is that people who want to see content from your business will have to go to the trouble of actively adjusting their ‘See first in News Feed settings’. Which of course means that all businesses will have to get very, very creative in producing content that ‘sparks meaningful discussions’.

Coveted organic slots in the main newsfeed will be awarded to businesses that produce ‘useful’ content packed with valuable information. We predict a surge of creativity to get around the changes and still achieve the same reach – particularly among businesses that can’t afford to pay more.

Listicles obviously created as clickbait will be sidelined in favour of content that genuinely encourages lively discussion and improves people’s lives.

It’s a lofty goal and you’ve certainly got to admire Facebook’s noble intentions.

Will you accept the challenge?

-Sketch Corp.