What I've Learned In My Three Years As a Marketing Consultant and Business Owner

As Elysium celebrates its third birthday and we enter our fourth year, I’m reflecting on my time as both a business owner and a marketing consultant. Much like how I feel when it’s one of my kid’s birthdays, in some ways it seems that Elysium should be much older, and in other ways I can’t believe it’s already been three years. 

If I had to narrow it down to only three takeaways, these are the ones that stand out: 

1.     There are opportunities everywhere.

As a marketing consultant, you can’t help but judge - err - look at everyone’s marketing creative, messaging, and more with a sharp lens. And truthfully, sometimes you wish you could shut off that lens. We create menus, so you bet that every single time I’m in a restaurant I check out the layout, art direction, and more. I know my husband just loves this when we’re supposed to be out for date night (love you Phil!). But the same is true for logos, sales brochures, and any other piece of tangible or digital marketing. I find myself scrutinizing emails during the holidays and wondering why that subject line was chosen or who decided to use those two colors together. A lot of this judging is helpful when we work with our designers. We share the pieces we love for inspiration, and we share the pieces we don’t love as very clear “dont's.” 

Another opportunity is when we talk about what we do and our love for Elysium with our friends and family. They tend to share that love, and it’s a pretty awesome thing.  I’m already super excited for what 2018 is going to bring because I already have a new phenomenal client joining the Elysium team, a lead that came directly from an old boss, a meeting scheduled with a potential partner from a connection of my Dad’s, and a prospective client meeting from a Mom of one of my son’s friends. Elysium’s third year wouldn’t have been half as successful without the love, support, and encouragement from friends and family.

2.     You will find yourself doing things and in situations you never imagined (and loving every second of it.)

No, this isn’t like an - all of a sudden I was on Broadway situation - but when you and your team whole-heartedly invest yourselves into a client’s success, and see yourselves as a true part of the client team, you jump in to do anything possible to move the business forward. A couple of quick examples:

  • An investor meeting that we orchestrated for an organic skincare client
  • A focus group analyzing tampon use
  • A farm visit and a menu tasting for every.single.item
  • A construction site of the largest observation wheel on the east coast

3.      No two days are ever the same.

I often get asked “What is your favorite part of your job?” and more times than not my answer is that no two days are ever exactly the same. One day we will be launching a gorgeous website, another day we'll be onsite at a video shoot, and a third day we will be in an all-day strategy planning meeting. It's not all sunshine and roses everyday, but most days we're working together as a team to come up with strategic ideas and campaigns to better our client's sales. As Elysium continues to grow I’m trying to celebrate our successes more and truly learn from the challenges.

I know how lucky I am to be doing what I love everyday. And I know that these three years have flown by with a higher amount of good than bad days. I’m ready to continue learning, meeting amazing people, and celebrating the good stuff. Happy 3rd Birthday Elysium Marketing Group!   

 

Elysium Marketing Group Wins Top Marketing Consulting Agency!

We're excited and grateful that Elysium can now add award-winner to our portfolio!  

As you may know, Elysium Marketing Group has been providing high quality digital marketing services to clients in the greater Philadelphia area since 2015. However, today we’re excited to celebrate our designation as a Top Local Agency in Philadelphia by UpCity! We were selected as one of twenty-five companies in Philadelphia as a Top Marketing Consulting Firm. 

What Does This Mean?

UpCity’s Top Local Agency marketplace is a resource designed to connect small and medium sized local businesses with high-quality digital marketing service providers in their local area, allowing business owners to get the services they need quickly, from a service provider they can trust. The UpCity team independently reviews agencies across North America to determine the best service providers in each local market, ensuring that no matter where you are, great digital marketing services are never more than a click away.

To check out our profile and follow this link: https://upcity.com/local-marketing-agencies/profiles/elysium-marketing-group

We will continue to strive to bring our clients hands-on, strategic marketing creative and campaigns that move the needle and get real results. Thank you for being a part of Elysium's journey! 

6 Reasons the Creative Brief is Essential

Who doesn’t love filling out forms and answering questions??!? Ok, a lot of people. But in the case of new creative for your brand, answering questions in a creative brief is an absolute necessity to ensure you get the finished product you’re envisioning in the timeframe that you desire.

Why? Well, as marketers, working with clients on creative projects is exciting and rewarding, but without a creative brief and discussion around brand goals and target audience BEFORE the work commences, the project could be off track before it even begins.

Below are 6 reasons the creative brief is essential:

 

1.     Direction – You could tell us you want a new logo, but without a creative brief to tell us more about what your company’s values are, what your brand represents, and what your vision is, we could literally make 2,678 logos and still not nail the one you want. The creative brief allows you to point us in the right direction and ensure we start off on the right foot.

2.     Thoughtfulness – Many companies know they need a new logo, ad, website, etc., but they don’t want to take the time to really think about the best way to make it happen. The creative brief asks thoughtful, pointed questions to assure you’re really thinking about what you want, why you want it, and how the upgrade will affect the company, the brand, and the bottom line. We put a lot of time into thinking through good creative, but we want to make sure that our thoughts are aligned with yours. 

3.     Timing – Many times, companies need their creative ASAP! Ok, let’s be serious, MOST times they do. Nonetheless, sometimes having more time to play with the creative can be an advantage to explore options and enhance creativity. Once the creative brief is filled out and we learn when final creative is needed, we can create a timeline, and set expectations for rounds of reviews and a final due date.  The more complete the brief responses, the faster and closer we’ll get to your final creative by the deadlines.  

4.     Expectations – As mentioned before, the brief sets expectations for the due date of your final creative, but it also sets the expectations for the creative piece itself. The brief clearly states a roadmap for things like tone to include in the copy and imagery to include in the creative. When you tell us that you want your ad to be whimsical, funny, and bright, we know that creating a very serious black and white ad is not even close to what you’re looking for. Show us your inspiration, give us your ideas, no matter how unfinished they may be.

5.     Accountability – Since the creative brief helps with timelines and design expectations, it also serves as a document that keeps both parties accountable. We are accountable to meet deadlines, and create stunning creative that wows by following your initial ask. You are accountable for following the timeline, and for telling us what you’re looking for to get us started.

6.     Cost – The creative brief ensures both parties know exactly what they’re getting and when. Without the brief, there is a ton of guesswork into what the brand’s identity and goals are. If we guess wrong, it could cost you more money for us to re-do the creative. It makes sense to look at the creative brief as a cost-saving, strong creative producing document. A good brief aims to cut costs and promote efficiency. Get the best bang for your buck!

If you need help putting a creative brief or any other aspect of design together, then check out our services page to see how we can assist! 

Best of luck, and happy briefing!

Celebrating Elysium Marketing Group's 1st Anniversary!

Hitting the one-year anniversary in business is somewhat like your real-life baby turning one. Thoughts like Where did the time go? and feelings of accomplishment swirl in your head. You also wonder, How did I get through this?  and What did I learn to help me continue on this journey ?

As I reflect on the past year at Elysium Marketing Group, I’m thankful for so many people, clients, and mentors. To share my gratitude, I’m going to pass along some words of wisdom I received when Elysium first started, plus I’ll throw in some of the lessons I learned over the past year for good measure.

 

1.     “Don’t leave your job without having a client or two, and don’t half-ass it. If you’re going to start your own company, really do it full throttle.”  - Jon Seitz, mentor and owner of MayoSeitz Media

Thank goodness I listened to this blunt advice!  I left my job with one client in hand, and another in tow. Elysium is now growing at a fast pace with new clients hiring us each month, and current clients growing their marketing plans and footprints.

Before ramping up my biz dev side of things, I made sure my website and business cards were branded and stayed true to the Elysium brand. I went “full-ass” into ensuring that people could learn more about the company on my website.

 

2.     “You can decide who to work with now. Choose to work with good people.”  - Marcia O’Connor, client, mentor, and President of The O’ Connor Group

This is where I feel so incredibly fortunate. I took this advice to heart both with people I work with internally and externally. At Elysium Marketing Group, I have a phenomenal team of designers, marketers, interns, and editors that are so gifted and dedicated to the business. Without their talent and commitment, Elysium would not be where it’s at today and providing the caliber of services that we do. 

I also feel fortunate that I have clients who are smart business people and just really good people who care about not only their businesses, but also about the greater community around them. I strive to teach my clients about best marketing practices, but they teach me everyday about business, life in general, and how to be a better person.

 

3.     “Always document your successes, and if you can get good pictures, do that too.” -  Brian Toner, client, mentor, and President of Eventions Productions

This has been such an important piece of advice. Elysium has gained new clients by showing what we accomplished by partnering with other clients. In the world of social media (here I go preaching about imagery AGAIN!) imagery is so important, so this piece of advice is spot on. When I can show a new website, logo, or sales piece we’ve created through social media, it’s WAY more impactful than if I just talk about it.

 

4.     “Once a job has first begun… do it right or not at all.”  - Steve Lupin, Dad, mentor, and Managing Partner of Hamburg, Rubin, Mullin, Maxwell, & Lupin

Ok, so to be honest, my Dad didn’t say this to me when I first started the business, he said it to me my entire life. Having a role model who is always on my side and also incredibly successful in business was one of the catalysts that gave me enough confidence to start the business in the first place. Being an entrepreneur is a scary thing, but it helps to have mentors and family members (he’s not the only one… my Mom and brother are fabulous editors, and my husband is the best sounding board for my new ideas).

Helping businesses reach their goals through strategic marketing, and creating beautiful creative that will help them grow their revenue is so rewarding and frankly exactly what I want to be doing.

Lastly, I want to scream a heartfelt THANK YOU from the rooftop next to Billy Penn at City Hall  to everyone who’s been a supporter of Elysium Marketing Group. We appreciate every piece of advice, like on Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn, comment on our work, referrals, or general positive vibe sent our way! Here’s to 2016…we wish you much marketing success in the New Year!

 

Elyse Lupin, President of Elysium Marketing Group