Monthly Archives: May 2012

The Intern’s Trip to Tennessee

When I asked for a couple of days off to go visit my mom in TN, I was told I could only go if I got some photos of authentic Tennesseean life. And oh, did I get some.

As a preface to my blog post, I actually really enjoy visiting TN, because it’s about as far (culturally) as you can get from Denver, and I always see interesting things. With that being said, anything I say is all in good fun, and if you’re from TN:

1. I’m sorry.

2. Don’t take anything personally. TN is a great state with lots of cool things to see and do!

We actually did lots of fun things while we were there, like horse back riding, ziplining, and of course plenty of hiking and driving around. One of the greatest things I did while there, though, was see synchronized fireflies. They only live in Tennessee and in Malaysia, coincidentally where both of my parents live! I’ve never seen them before, though, and I’m glad I had the chance to. Unlike normal fireflies, which all light up sporadically, synchronized fireflies will blink on and off for a few seconds, then all go completely dark for about 7 seconds. Then they all start to blink at the same time again. It’s amazing to see, especially when you’re in the middle of the woods and it looks like you’re surrounded by Christmas lights in every direction. I didn’t manage to get a good photo, but I included one from the internet so you could all see how beautiful it is.

Below I have a gallery of some of the photos I took while in TN. Feel free to click on the first one to start the gallery!

Keys To Good Website Design

Here at Bayard, we are very experienced at creating websites for all types of companies.  Nowadays, with the Internet being almost everyone’s primary resource, you would assume that companies would realize how important a tool their website is for communicating with their customers and potential customers.  However, after browsing a variety of sites, we have often found that some corporations have spent inadequate time creating an effective webpage.

How big a deal is a company’s webpage anyway?  HUGE!  Let’s take a second to point out some of the main advantages of a good website.

First Impressions

You only get one first impression, so you better make it a good one, since that initial notion will stick with your customer.  When people are looking to find out more about a company, they will usually go to the website to learn more.  Since the site is the only tangible piece of the company that the customer is able to experience at the time, the customer will base their opinion off of what they view.  For example, if a business has a very eloquent, straightforward, and well put together website, a customer is more likely to understand the business’ offerings and feel comfortable doing business with them, compared to viewing a subpar website.  According to studies by Chao Liu and colleagues from Microsoft Research, Users often leave Web pages in 10–20 seconds, but pages with a clear value proposition can hold people’s attention for much longer.  The study states the following:

It’s clear from the chart that the first 10 seconds of the page visit are critical for users’ decision to stay or leave. The probability of leaving is very high during these first few seconds because users are extremely skeptical, having suffered countless poorly designed Web pages in the past. People know that most Web pages are useless, and they behave accordingly to avoid wasting more time than absolutely necessary on bad pages.

If the Web page survives this first — extremely harsh — 10-second judgment, users will look around a bit. However, they’re still highly likely to leave during the subsequent 20 seconds of their visit. Only after people have stayed on a page for about 30 seconds does the curve become relatively flat.1

Navigation

How many times have you struggled on a website to find the necessary information you were looking for?  Keeping your webpage organized and easily navigable promotes a better user experience on your page, and allows your customers to form a closer understanding of your business.  This especially stands true for businesses that have a lot of close competitors.  When a potential customer runs across your page via a search engine such as Google, they aren’t going to spend a ton of time searching for their required information.  Instead, if they can’t quickly find what they are looking for, they will commonly give up and move onto a competitor’s website (the next one down on the search engine).  Wal-Mart recently created a new recruitment website, and Corporate Recruiting VP Mike Grennier says the following about their site, “It wanted something clean and simple, with as few clicks as possible. It wanted to improve the candidate experience, reduce the time it takes to navigate the site, and make sure people are captured, not lost before they leave.”2  Simply, failing to create a logical and easy layout for your site will result in lost potential customers.

Less is sometimes more

One reason the Internet has become so popular is it allows us to access information quickly and efficiently.  The key here is speed.  No customer goes on a website looking forward to reading heaps and heaps of information.  They want to get in and get out as quickly as possible, while finding the sought after information to answer their questions.  Don’t spend lots of time putting fluff and excessive information on your site, because chances are your customers don’t care.  They want their question answered as quickly as possible, and don’t want to weed out a lot of extra words in the process.  I’m not saying that detailed communication is always a bad thing, and in fact, can be comforting to a potential customer, but the site needs to be laid out in a manner where they get to decide for themselves if they would like to go through the given information.

Contact

A website is the easiest place to gather information about a business, but it is not the only place.  A website can often feel impersonal and distant from the actual company, and a customer may want the comfort of talking to a representative to answer their questions, or visiting the “store” to see the place for themselves.  It is thus essential to provide contact information for your company in an easy to find location on your site.  If a customer is taking the time to personally reach out to you, then chances are they are quite interested in what you’re offering.

 

The task of setting up a successful company website may seem daunting, but there are so many resources out there today to help with the challenge such as website templates and guides to creating a site.  Also, taking a look at several companies’ pages will give you a better understanding of aspects you like and dislike in a webpage.  Here is a link to a helpful article that goes more in depth with the steps of creating the perfect site: http://psd.tutsplus.com/tutorials/designing-tutorials/9-essential-principles-for-good-web-design/

Sources:

1 http://www.useit.com/alertbox/page-abandonment-time.html

2 http://www.ere.net/2012/04/17/walmart-cuts-down-on-clicks-with-new-career-site/

Monumental Event!

Since Bayard’s founding in 1923, the company has had countless successful accomplishments and endeavors. Bayard’s rich history is filled with an abundance of top-notch employees, effective campaigns, and tight-knit relationships with its clients. One can’t help but to look back and marvel at the results Bayard has achieved over the years. It is not uncommon for one to find themselves thinking, “How is it even possible for Bayard to become even more amazing?” Well, we’re all in luck, because today Bayard Advertising Agency is proud to announce their most exciting news, since……….ever!!!

Drum role please. Without further adieu, Bayard would like to get this exciting news off their chest. We are excited to announce that we have a new intern working for us–SAM! Yes, yes, yes, we know, we are just as excited about this as you are. You will all be privileged to have the opportunity to read the blogs, Facebook posts, and Tweets that Sam will help post from now on. Just when you thought Bayard couldn’t get any better…BOOM, this exceptional news comes in. Sam is very excited to be working at Bayard, and can’t wait to share relevant news and info with you.

However, when we were blessed with the opportunity to speak with Sam, he couldn’t take all the credit. The modest man, who would undoubtedly never write a whole blog post praising himself, told us how Kate (the creator and voice of much of the social media that has been in place) would still be doing her regular updates and posts just as before, so we can still keep our high expectations that she has caused us to develop. However, after talking with one of Bayard’s distinguished employees, we have concluded that they hired Sam to teach Kate the ins and outs of social media. One employee reports that he even saw Sam teaching Kate the basics of social media today, but this is not officially confirmed yet.

Sam is very happy to be working at Bayard Advertising Agency, and can’t wait to provide you with the utmost important news and updates. Make sure to keep up with our blog, Facebook page, and Twitter. Have a great day!

Best,

Bayard Advertising Agency

6 Amazing Recruitment Ads

Here are some of my favorite recruitment ads. Just try to resist giving these companies a call after seeing their creativity.

Restaurant Binnen – Dishwasher

The objective at this restaurant was to fill a vacancy for a dishwasher. They came up with the idea of printed beer and wineglasses with red lipstick and a message reading: “Restaurant Binnen is looking for dishwashers.” It clearly worked well; the position was filled within a week!

British Intelligence

Government Agency GCHQ ran a six-week campaign on Xbox Live in order to recruit 18-34 year olds. It said that many of the criteria it looks for while recruiting, such as “quick thinking, problem solving and team work” are also reflected in game-play experiences on Xbox. I can’t see how this wouldn’t be hugely successful. Take boys playing games like Call of Duty or Modern Warfare and recruit them for jobs that they would not only be interested in, but also quite good at.

SAIT Polytechnic – Fundraising Positions

SAIT planted fake $20 bills at the 2008 Canadian Council for the Advancement of Education conference. The front of the bills looked normal, but on the back they read “Apparently, you have a knack for finding money. Interested in fundraising? Let’s chat.” with contact information located below. Though I can see people will likely quibble that not everyone who picks up money off the floor would be a good fundraiser, I love the idea, and I think they tie the fundraising in well with their tagline on the back of the bills.

BTH – Technical Students

BTH is a technology school in Sweden, and they don’t want average students. That’s why they sent potential students a package with disassembled cell phones. When the students fit the phones together and got them working again, they received a text message saying “Hi! You seem to be technical. Call us at BTH. 0455385040.”

Go Air – Pilots

This ad is for pilots for Go Air. Simple ad, great concept. Not much else to say!

Dallas Restaurant & Bar – Bartender

This may be my favorite ad of the whole bunch, despite the boring color scheme. I love the concept and how it was executed. I have a feeling that bartending at Dallas Restaurant would be a awesome job!

So all these ads are clearly both creative and attractive, but what makes them so great? If you look carefully, you’ll see they all have a few of the same attributes. Using these fundamental values in your recruitment ads will guarantee that you find employees who not only share your company’s core values, but also appreciate the creativity and hard work needed to be a strong employee.

  • Attractive Visual Design. Whether it’s bright colors or bold fonts, great recruitment ads will always be eye-catching. No matter how good the tagline or content is, if you can’t catch the attention of potential candidates, your ad will fall by the wayside. A good ad will be simple, but still make it clear what the ad is for, as well as project a positive image for the company.
  • Eye-Catching Headline. It’s great to have images that make people stop and look at your ads. But you need the headline to back them up. If someone looks at your ad for a few seconds and isn’t able to figure out what the ad is for, all interest will be lost. Take some time to come up either with something catchy, or something that only people in the industry you’re hiring for would understand (like the ad for pilots for GoAir, above.)
  • Relevant Information, but Concise. Not all recruitment ads have copy at all. And sometimes they don’t need any. An aura of mystery can work wonders for drumming up interest in a job. Especially if candidates need to complete a task simply to apply for the job (such as figure out an equation for the phone number.) But in most cases, details are your friend, and you’ll want to list basic information such as job details, benefits, and maybe even a short description of your company. And of course, always make sure to stress the positive aspects of working for your company.

Sources:
http://jobmob.co.il/blog/creative-recruitment-advertising/#ixzz1uOqTntOO
http://biz.oregonian.com/classifiedads/?sec=34&tert=42
http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2009/nov/20/xbox-gchq-adverts
http://adsoftheworld.com/media/ambient/sait_polytechnic_recruitment_dollars http://directdaily.blogspot.com/2006/12/bth-how-technical-are-you.html
http://adsoftheworld.com/media/print/goair_wanted_pilots http://applicant.com/creative-recruitment-ads/