Using memes and macros in your viral marketing strategy

Went viral before it was mainstream - hipster meme about creating a viral marketing strategyIn the past few years, I’ve seen Internet marketers divide themselves into two distinct camps:  those who embrace memes and consider them a powerful marketing tool, and those who dismiss them as an off-brand waste of time. The battle lines have been drawn in blogs, forums, and by the water cooler, and there are compelling arguments for both cases.

But here’s the thing: The term “meme” has been in use for almost 40 years, encompasses a vast variety of cultural phenomenon, and is an absolute cornerstone of modern marketing.

If you’ve ever seen an Energizer Bunny commercial, been privy to a “Kodak Moment”, or watched as Gatorade was poured over a coach’s head and felt just the slightest twinge of professional jealousy, then you’ve already bought into the power of memes in marketing.

What Is A Meme?

This is a question that’s been asked many, manymany times, but I’ve yet to see a source that succinctly encapsulates the richness of the medium. In its simplest form, a meme could be thought of as the manifestation of a social phenomenon — one that spreads and evolves as it progresses throughout its lifespan. In its purest form, the term “meme” is broad enough to be applied to nearly anything (think Greek architectural styles still used today).  But for the sake of this article, let’s boil it down to five relevant categories:
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Design hiring trends and salary demands

Choose the best staffing solution for your businessDesign careers are becoming more specialized, and those with deep experience in the digital world are currently highly sought after by employers and command high salaries. Here’s are the design hiring trends and salary demands you need to know when recruiting professionals in 2014.

Graphic Design

Salary and hiring for graphic designers varies significantly based on industry and skill set. And because demand varies equally, graphic designers have a wide salary range.

Salary: A 2012 report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports $48,730 as the median annual salary for graphic designers, although actual salaries differ by region, skills, and experience. Salaries range from $30,000 to $77,000. And even though that data is two years old, the salaries are still accurate. According to Salary.com, the current median annual salary is $49,377, relatively unchanged from 2012.

Where the jobs are: The highest concentration of graphic design jobs can be found in California, New York, Florida, Texas, and Illinois, driven primarily by digital jobs in Silicon Valley, Silicon Alley, and growing tech scenes in cities like Houston and Chicago. Washington, D.C. also has the highest median salary, where graphic designers earn an average of $69,700.
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Highlighting three influential graphic designers

A list of 9 conferences for .Net Developers to attend.Many graphic designers focus on learning the newest techniques and technologies to advance their career. However, in many ways, it is equally as important to have a solid understanding of where the roots of graphic design began and a familiarity with the designers who have forever changed the industry. By having a solid understanding of the evolution of design principles and trends, you will be better equipped to use current styles and techniques to produce effective designs.

Take some time to review the work of three influential graphic designers and learn about their impact on the industry as we know it today. Here are three designers that you should know about:
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The five hottest marketing jobs

ADO_fb_403x403_hotjobsThe digital age – the Internet, social media and mobile technology – has spawned a revolution in the field of marketing. Organizations are looking to connect with their customers, stakeholders and supporters in new and different ways – and they aim to do it in the most strategic and cost-efficient manner as possible. The result has been plenty of new opportunities for job seekers. Here are five of the hottest marketing jobs for 2014 and beyond.

Content marketing specialist 

Content marketing is all the rage these days, and it requires Web-savvy content creators to drive the engine. Content specialists write articles, create graphics and polls aimed at engaging an audience, and, ultimately, change or enhance consumer behavior. Content marketing is focused on sharing useful information rather than making a hard advertising sell. Content specialists require solid writing, blogging and social media skills, as well as a working knowledge of search engine optimization (SEO).
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Build an online portfolio and showcase your work

h_webinars_lgThe graphic & web design fields are highly competitive. To attract clients and garner interest in your work, a portfolio is a must-have. Not only can you use it to showcase your talent and tell the world you are for hire, it also acts as a point of contact and a place where prospective clients or employers can learn more about you.

Whether you are freelancing or seeking employment in a design agency does not matter. As this AIGA article mentions, your portfolio needs to reflect who you are, include your best work and be engaging for viewers.

What Should Appear On Your Portfolio

Portfolio websites come in all shapes and sizes but most of them have the following basic information:

  • A gallery page to showcase your work and show potential employers what you are capable of.
  • Information about yourself such as your name, the city and country you live in, and any other information you believe might play in your favor like your hobbies and other interests.
  • Your current work status and the types of projects you are looking for – whether you are seeking full-time employment, a part-time job, or freelance projects.
  • Valid contact information is also necessary – be it a phone number, a contact form, or a simple email address.
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Using Pinterest to organize your work ideas & inspirations

iStock_000017419171MediumWhen you think of Pinterest, you most likely think of crafts, fashion and recipes. But the social network has numerous uses beyond homemaking and couture. Many professionals, especially those in the creative fields such as graphic design and marketing, use Pinterest to find inspiration and organize their ideas.

What is Pinterest?

Pinterest is a social media site that allows users to “pin” the images and videos they find online to a virtual pinboard and share them with others. Pinterest is designed to be quite visual and social. Users can create as many pinboards as they’d like, based on their interests, hobbies or other categories.”

Setting up your boards

Many people use Pinterest for both personal and professional purposes. In addition to having boards for home improvement projects and travel destinations, you can set up separate boards for your work inspiration and ideas. For example, if you are a graphic designer, you might utilize different pinboards to keep design software videos separate from design technique videos. This way you can easily find what you’re looking for and are less likely to forget about it. Pinterest allows you the option to set boards private so that only you can have access to your boards. One important tip is to make sure that your public boards contain only appropriate content, since your future employer may view your social media profiles during the hiring process.
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