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Creativity Keeps Businesses Booming

Fortunately, working remotely is always an option for our team, but of course, it’s a necessity right now. Although our business office is closed, our home offices are open, and we are continuing to build our clients’ brands.

While COVID-19 is slowing down activities in some markets, it is providing opportunities in others. For example, we recently teamed up with Indiana Historical Society to build an online tool that allows Hoosiers to submit photos, videos and stories documenting how they are dealing with the “new normal” of life amid COVID-19.

We have been helping another one of our clients explain the financial aspects of this new normal on an almost daily basis, developing and distributing e-blast messages to their customers about tax filing and payment extensions, new loan programs, etc. To house the numerous financial updates, we created a COVID-19 Resource Center on their website.

We are also helping a senior living management company promote temporary jobs that have opened up in the wake of COVID-19, and we are documenting the many ways in which they are keeping residents and their loved ones connected despite visiting restrictions.

How are we doing all of this from the comfort of our homes? Here are a few tips and tricks that could help you and your business during this time as well:

Zoom Meetings: Zoom is the most popular video conferencing solution for companies with 500 employees or less. It’s gaining users rapidly amid COVID-19 concerns, adding roughly 2.22 million monthly active users since the start of the year. Allowing us to see each other and communicate face to face brings back a sense of normalcy and “business as usual.” It’s also keeping our company’s collaborative, creative spirit alive and thriving!

Task Lists: When everyone’s operating remotely, it can become easy to lose sight of what we’re all working on. That’s why we’re all sending each other bulleted task lists every morning. We also utilize Trello, which organizes everyone’s tasks in separate boards and lets you track each team member’s progress.

Sharing on Slack: Slack, our office newsfeed, has been our best friend lately. Not only does it allow us to stay in touch, but it’s been a great tool for boosting employee morale in the midst of COVID-19. Sharing pictures of our home offices — and the pets who break into them — is a particularly comforting activity.

Tapping into Creativity: When the mechanical shark kept malfunctioning during the production of Jaws, director Steven Spielberg took a less-is-more approach, making the monster’s presence known through menacing music and underwater point-of-view shots. This creative solution saved the film and made it even better than it would have been before. Think of COVID-19 as the malfunctioning mechanical shark you have to work around in order to keep your business booming.

By Brian Coles 
Chief Marketing Technologist / Owner

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“Slacking” on the Job

When the team members at Coles Marketing mention “slacking,” we’re not talking about shirking our responsibilities. “Slacking” is actually improving our workflow. Slack

Launched in 2013, Slack is a messaging service that’s proving to be a highly helpful tool for interoffice communication. The co-founder and CEO Stewart Butterfield recently landed on Advertising Age‘s list of the 50 most creative people of 2015.

“Slack has exploded in popularity,” writes Advertising Age’s Tim Peterson. “It hit one million simultaneous users in October and has been praised for its utility, smart design and user-friendliness — something you don’t expect from an office tool.”

Slack essentially replaces email and makes communication a bit…cleaner. It allows you to create separate channels for certain topics. So, rather than frantically digging through your inbox for a conversation you had days or weeks ago, you can quickly go to the channel in which you had that specific conversation on Slack. Slack Sample

Most importantly, this tool makes the workplace more fun. For example, it allows you to respond to messages with amusing emojis. (It always brings a smile to my face when our web designer —and resident comic-book nerd — replies to certain messages with a Batman face.) This kind of communication may seem silly, but it goes a long way in brightening up an office.

If you’re looking for a way to clean up your communication, improve workflow and have a little fun along the way, “slacking” is the way to go.

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