How We Stay Current in Our Industries

Morgan Shaffer browses her news sources on her laptop inside of the 8THIRTYFOUR office.

The world is a hectic place nowadays, isn’t it? It’s hard to focus on just about anything, especially anything remotely important. It seems like no matter where you are, you’re getting bombarded with useless information and cute animal videos (Seriously. If we see one more mildly-inspirational quote paired with a Minion, we’re going to lose our minds).

So how the heck do you keep up with what really matters when you’re combatting all of the useless crap you see every day? Well, we can’t tell you how to shut out all of the noise, but we can give you hints on how to dial in on what matters.

Here are a few of the ways that we stay current in all of the industries that fit underneath our Integrated Communications umbrella. Close that Facebook tab, and give these tips a try.

Keep Your Marketing Mind Fresh

Marketing is always growing and changing with each new innovation. Learn from the best and stay inspired with these tips.

  • Learn at your desk. When you make a campaign, A/B test it, so you can tell what works and what doesn’t. It’ll help inform your choices in the future.
  • Open your mind during your free time. Check out podcasts like, Marketing Over Coffee or Marketing School while on your daily commute.
  • Find out what the experts are doing. AdWeek is a great source for ad campaigns making the news, branding, digital, creative, and more. They also offer webinars for continued learning.

It’s Not Creepy if It’s for PR

…Right? Okay, for real. Public relations requires you to get in the face of all of your contacts and journalists so you can know who’s doing what and when. Try these tips to stay on top of the news that can make or break your job.

  • Keep a close eye on journalists’ social media platforms. They’ll post job changes to these platforms way before official websites update their team rosters, so you’ll know right away if you’re contacting the wrong person for your pitch.
  • Read, read, read. Check out new publications, see what people are sharing on social media, and find out what common sources are for the audiences you want to target.
  • Check out some great tools like Cision and Meltwater for journalists’ contact info, and make sure to read Ragan’s PR Daily and Spin Sucks for trending content.

Good Design Needs Inspiration

You can’t expect to make something beautiful or effective if you don’t expose yourself to a lot of inspiring content. When designing for the advertising industry, it’s super important to see content in context, too. Try these tips, just for you.

  • Inspiration is everywhere, and in the age of social media, there’s no reason not to use platforms like Pinterest and Instagram to get those creative juices flowing. Check out some design tags and start following artists you admire.
  • Want to see design in advertising? No problem. Head over to AdWeek and AdAge to see creative in action.
  • Every designer knows how much of a headache it can be when software updates (we’re looking at you, Adobe). Stay up-to-date on software tips and graphic design trends by checking out Creative Bloq.

Digital’s Always Changing

The digital landscape is always shifting, which means you have to keep your eyes out for important updates. Check out these suggestions to make sure you’re always on top of your space.

  • When it comes to digital, it’s best to learn from the companies that are running the place. Check out the Google Ads Blog and Facebook’s IQ and Marketing Partner newsletters to hear straight from the source.
  • Keep up-to-date with Search Engine Watch. It’s great for all things search engine marketing and more. Plus, they offer desktop notifications so you never miss an update.
  • Look for local digital networking events like Detroit’s annual Digital Summit. These are the best places to connect with others in the industry and learn tips you might not encounter otherwise.

Just Keep Up in General

It’s important to be on top of your industry, but it’s also essential to know what’s going on in the world around you. We don’t exist in a vacuum, and neither do your clients. Stay aware of the world around you with these tips.

  • Start off your mornings with NPR’s Up First and The New York Times’ The Daily. You can listen while you’re getting ready or during your commute so that you’ll be informed before you even get to your office.
  • While you’re at it, subscribe to The Daily Skimm and CNN’s Top 5. These give you the top stories for around the world in a quick, readable format, because no one has time to sink into staying informed.

Once you get the information that’s relevant to you, it’s time to do something with it. Contact us about how we can use all of our info to propel you and your brand forward.

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