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What do Crocs and our founder and chief inspiration officer, Wayne Stanley’s childhood dreams, have in common? They both made a comeback in 2017. While Crocs were trending in fashion and people were jamming out to Ed Sheeran’s hit song, Shape of You, Wayne Stanley was making his entrepreneurial dreams a reality. 

This week marks five years since Bowe Digital made its’ debut in 2017. In the five years since, we’ve accomplished a lot and made tons of memories, friends and amazing partners along the way.

Here are 5 things we’re proud of in the 5 years since Bowe Digital began.

1. Being named #12 on the Best Places to Work in Indiana list 

Landing the #12 spot on the Best Places to Work in Indiana list this year was HUGE! We’re super fortunate to have a team that brags about our company as much as they do, but this award speaks for itself. Compiled by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, the Best Places to Work awards are based on anonymous employee surveys with questions about company culture, pay, diversity, and more. We’ve learned first hand that happy employees produce better satisfied partners and productivity. 

2. Making a name for ourselves in the title industry

Our company has carved a niche in the land title insurance industry, and we’ve made a name for ourselves through our outreach by attending and speaking at events like NS3, ALTA HOP and ALMA Agency Seminars. Even if most of you think that our name is Bowe Digital (Bow-ie) and not Bowe Digital (Bow)...we forgive you. We are proud to set the standard and serve title and real estate companies across the U.S., and we feel lucky that companies outside of title and real estate have trusted us, too.

3. Offering our customers custom solutions

The Bowe Digital difference is that all of our marketing, communications and advertising strategies are 100% custom. Forget pre-made templates… we recognize what makes you unique and start from scratch to produce original content that’s branded to fit your needs and meet your standards. We pride ourselves on being an extension of your team. Our goal is to deliver on your vision for connecting with your customers and making an impact in your industry. 

4. Encouraging our team members to learn and grow

Since getting our start in 2017, we have always encouraged the members of our team to set educational and professional goals and to never stop learning. Pushing our team to further their expertise and career helps them to better serve our partners. It’s a win-win. We’re proud to share that our entire team is Hubspot certified by Hubspot Academy and that almost all the members of our team have been certified as ALTA HOP Leaders with eight earning that certificate this year.

5. Growing the Bowe Digital family 

Half of businesses fail in the first five years according to the Small Business Administration, but not Bowe Digital. Despite being tested by the pandemic in 2020, our company grew faster than ever, providing the best service and support to our growing list of partners. What started as five teammates and a dream of helping a few trusting partners, has evolved into a team of almost 20 full-time employees, serving nearly 200 partners. Our team truly is a family - it means everything to us - and we treat our partners like family, too!

Like Crocs, Bowe Digital likes to make a statement. We provide our partners comfort with a bold look that customers can’t miss, and while we’d like to give Crocs all the credit, we can’t. We really owe it all to Wayne and to his grandparents, Shirley and Glen Vernon Bowe who inspired him and inspired more than just the name of this company. We honor them each day by sticking to the promise to work hard, play hard, and respect everyone. We can’t believe it’s been five years, and we’re raising a glass to the next five…and the five after that…and the five after that! Visit bowedigital.com to learn more about our story, and join us in celebrating five years by partnering with us!

All businesses share one common goal, and that’s to achieve steady and continuous growth. I’m sure we could make a laundry list of tactics that could help us get there, but one thing stands out above the rest: COMMUNICATION. If there’s one thing that your team should be focusing on this year, it’s improving their internal and external communication practices.

Whatever efforts you’re making now can be improved with some reflection and a plan. Good communication has no ceiling, and it’s worth putting time and effort into because it builds your reputation, establishes your brand, and ultimately, sells your products and services.

Internal Communication

The members of your team need to be on the same page. There are four types of business communication, and three of those are internal: internal upward, internal downward and internal lateral. All three aid in creating consistent messages and uncovering problems for customers. Additionally, keeping the members of your team informed on internal news will make them feel more involved and invested in your business.

Whether it be at an in-person meeting, virtually or over email, always ask your team what questions they get asked the most by customers. By uncovering recurring problems, you can find a way to solve them. If a customer asks the same question to multiple team members, the goal is that they’ll get the same answer every time. To achieve this kind of consistency, you need to establish a standard for the entire team and determine what you want to say about your business. 

Don’t know where to start? Our Bowe Digital team helps businesses establish their brand voice and presents them with the strategies they need to communicate effectively with their audiences through our Story Arc Process. We interview your customers to find out what they really think; then, we combine that information with your values and goals to present a story everyone on your team can follow.

External Communication

Now that you have the ammunition, you need to communicate with your customers proactively with a consistent message. It's time to act as a resource and establish your team as industry experts. Eliminate commonly asked questions by answering them before they’re asked. AmeriTitle’s blog is a great example. As a partner of ours, they use this space to explain the complexities of their industry and provide tips, covering topics that commonly trip up their customers. This kind of proactive communication can be done through blog posts, social media, emails, etc. 

All communication to your external audiences should be timely and of substance. The golden rule is to not keep customers waiting and to not waste their time. Never communicate just for the sake of communicating. Instead, make sure you’re always providing content that is relevant or of value to them. Focusing on communication with your internal and external audiences this year is the best way to invest in your business. Who better to help you improve your communication than our team of communication experts at Bowe Digital. We’re here to help you reach your audiences in a way that works for you! Contact us today.

At Bowe Digital, our resolutions as individuals and a team are in place for 2021! (Insert Rocky theme here!) If you are anything like us, you are pumped to hit the ground running. You have been training for this your whole life. The new year is before you like a winding road, and you can’t wait to use every twist and turn to your advantage!

Have you considered your marketing plans for this year? Each day is an opportunity to tell everyone about your business, and like Rocky, you need a plan in place to be the champ! It takes a little training, but here are some ideas that will help you knock out your goals to become a marketing champion!   

Resolving to do even one tip from above betters your ability to communicate with the most important people in your corner...your customers. If you need some more support, contact Bradley Erb at bradley@bowedigital.com. He and the other members of the team are ready to cheer you on and can help with websites, social media and promotional material! Reach out because we are ready to fly now...just like Rocky.

When you are asked to tell your story, what comes to mind? For many, it can be an intimidating experience. If you are a small business owner, what is the story of your company? Can you define your brand?

When given the opportunity to attend my first ALTA ONE conference from the American Land Title Association, my thought was, “I’m not sure what I am getting into.” Being both new to marketing and the title industry after a career in teaching, I am after all the information I can get. Little did I know, I’d be presented with a lesson I’d want to pass on to all of you so quickly!

One of my first sessions was called Telling Your Story: Why It Matters to Your Business. I am a content writer for Bowe Digital, and we tell the stories of title companies (and other small businesses) across the country, and this session seemed right up my alley. 

Also, I recently attended an event and was asked to speak with vendors concerning their products and experiences. The goal was to collect information for our event planners/partners and to give each vendor a platform to present their stories. I was shocked to find that most vendors did not want to participate. Many didn’t know what to say and didn’t want to be recorded, but I considered it an opportunity missed. 

What was reinforced during Telling Your Story is that as a small business, it is important to figure out how your brand intersects with your audience. Where does your business story meet your customer’s story?

Mary O’Donnell, ALTA’s outgoing president and one of the presenters during this session, told the audience, “Your biggest single selling point is you. You are your brand.” It is important to personalize your business so customers recognize that it is a part of who you are. It’s a point Wayne and the rest of our team has always hammered home for our partners as well, but it was good to hear it from an industry leader. 

ALTA recently embarked on a marketing experience where its leadership walked through a process that eventually narrowed their business story down to one word...protection. (Check out this ALTA video that encompasses their journey.) As a team, they worked together to pinpoint exactly what it is they do as a company. 

At Bowe Digital, we’re here to tell every chapter of your story. Our innovative and fun story arc experience can help you find your voice, your brand, your purpose! As a small business owner, you are busy and drawn in many directions. We can walk beside you as you pinpoint why you are who you are, how that links to your business, and how all of it connects to your customers. Please contact Bradley Erb at bradley@bowedigital.com to initiate your story arc. You have a lot to say...let Bowe Digital help you say it.

Growing up in Galveston, Indiana, Kokomo was THE BIG CITY to me. When I heard my parents talking about “going to town,” it meant we were headed to Kokomo for the best adventures. We came here for everything exciting -- shopping for school clothes, eating out after church, (Anyone remember Duff’s Smorgasbord?) and the occasional movie.

When I met my husband at Ball State University, one thing we had in common was growing up in a small town. We got married and knew we wanted to raise our kids in a place that felt small but had all the big-city amenities.

Howard County was, and is, a perfect fit. We are proud to tell people that we are from Kokomo. Our first daughter, Jordan, graduated from IUK with an English degree, and our second daughter, Katie, is on her way to an elementary education degree. My husband, Jerry, is the sheriff of Howard County, and I have the privilege of working with Bowe Digital, a remote digital marketing company whose roots are all Kokomo. Led by founder Wayne M. Stanley, a 2004 graduate of Kokomo High School, more than a third of our team has ties to this great area.

One of my favorite things about Kokomo is the revitalization of our downtown area. There are restaurants, coffee shops, new YMCA, bookstores and the downtown library. I can go to Main Street Cafe for an Italian cream soda and head to Beyond Borders Bookstore in a matter of two city blocks, and I would pass (and probably enter) the Artworks Gallery by the Kokomo Art Association (These are personal recommendations. Full disclosure...none are Bowe Digital partners.) There is also a great chance I will meet a friend on the short walk.

All of the businesses mentioned above are locally owned and operated, and there are many great places to explore and discover. Bowe Digital wants to help small businesses create big-time marketing, advertising and communication. Our team can work with you (and your budget) to create a marketing strategy and increase your bottom line. In my time here, I’ve worked with partners from all over the country but would love to help businesses in this great community tell their story to new -- and old -- customers. We’re also proud members of the Greater Kokomo Chamber of Commerce.  

Bowe Digital’s mission is to support your needs and become part of your professional family. If you are interested in checking out what we have to offer, click the Let’s Talk button at the top of our home page. Wayne or Bradley Erb, who is our business development manager and another Kokomo native, will get back to you quickly! 

My city has so much to offer, and Bowe Digital can help you reach the Kokomo community and beyond. Bradley is currently visiting Chamber members, and he would love to stop by to show you all Bowe Digital has to offer. Schedule a meeting with Bradley today! We can help you become a first in the City of Firsts.

Bowe Digital is grateful for all of you during the last few months and takes immense pride in partnering with you. However, it’s time to get down to business, and that’s what we’re going to do today.

When customers of any kind start their search for products or services these days, most begin with one page -- Google. Google My Business (GMB) is a tool that can help all of us use search results to our advantage, and now is the time to take control of your Google My Business account if you haven’t already. COVID-19 has taught all of us the importance of quickly communicating changes to our customers, and a Google business listing is a great vehicle to easily do that.

Keeping your information up-to-date through GMB lets your customers know your current hours (Real estate never sleeps, but think about shops or restaurants), contact numbers, and special offers. You can add important images like a logo and photos to your account, and clients can add reviews. All of it will be included on Google for prospective clients to see. Important...yes! Free...yes!

Creating and claiming your profile is an important first step when getting started. The Google My Business page does an excellent job walking you through each portion of the process, but if you are looking for more specific, section-driven directions, check out How to Create, Claim and Verify Your Google Business Listing from ThriveHive.

After you have everything set up the way you like, it is important to circle back to your account at least once a month. It might be a good idea to add a reminder to your calendar. By updating your material consistently, you stay current for your customers. One last thing…while you’re fortifying your Google presence, you should ask for more reviews, too!

In an era where we Google everything, why would you risk missing a business opportunity when you can stay on top of things on the world’s most powerful search engine?

Wayne recently shared a couple of tips for managers who want to make sure they are still effectively leading their teams in a new remote work world. His advice was great and full of things he already does for us here at Bowe Digital.

However, the rest of our team (Alyssa, Ashley, Brad, Casey, Chelsea Dorinda, Heather and Richard) wanted to make sure we shared some of the tricks we used to help us adjust to a work-from-home environment too. Whether this is a list you need in your life right now or you think it should be passed on to a friend or colleague, we're just glad to be in a position to help make the transition a bit easier for everyone involved!

The 11 WFH tips for you from our personal experience are:

If you have other WFH tips our team should know about or share, send them Wayne's way at wayne@bowedigital.com!

A few weeks ago, I found heaven in Arizona—Bloody Mary heaven! During the National Settlement Services Summit (NS3), I had the opportunity to visit Hash Kitchen.  There were so many options and you were completely in control of how you made your drink. Spicy rim salt, jalapeno infused vodka, spicy Bloody Mary mix, shrimp, cheese, a Slim Jim piece, jalapeno, horseradish pickle, bacon, celery and, of course, more bacon -- that’s how I made mine, anyway.

So, what does all of this have to do with marketing your business? If you think about it, marketing is a lot like that Bloody Mary bar, and no I’m not writing this after a few drinks myself!  Think about it. There are so many different ingredients that can go into both a Bloody Mary and marketing, and you just need to find the perfect combination that fits your needs and desires.

How does marketing have ingredients? In the form of options. So many options. And not all those options will work for your market, but when you find the ones that do work, it’s like a perfect Bloody Mary crafted by your own hand. What ingredients do we recommend? A well-rounded strategy that meets people where they are. What does that mean? Where are your customers spending their time? Are they on mobile devices, social media, email etc? Wherever they are, that is where your marketing should be.

Just because someone else is putting jalapeno infused vodka in their Bloody Mary, doesn’t mean it will be the right flavor for you. Same goes for your marketing. You may have business friends in a different state using Snapchat and seeing great results from it, that doesn’t mean you should use it. And it definitely doesn’t mean you will get the same results from using it. Test your market. See what works for your area, and don’t be afraid to throw away some ingredients that just aren’t working. Not sure how to test? Just start by asking your customers where they are most active.

Get started today! Pick some ingredients and begin experimenting on your way to that perfect concoction. Need some help getting started with your initial testing? That’s why we’re here. Contact me today at 317.410.1690.

Let Bowe Digital be your business best friend.  Together, we’ll find what works well for your business and toast to your future success.

There's a Norwegian saying worth remembering: there's no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing. Watch as Bowe Digital owner, Wayne M. Stanley, talks about the ways you should change your "marketing clothing" this fall and better market your business.

 

 

Today’s internet access allows applicants to be savvier when searching for an employer. Recent studies show that job seekers do their home work before applying to most companies. You may not realize that you have a reputation in the job market already. Knowing what and where this reputation comes from is important to attracting the right applicants. Today’s applicant wants the new job to be just right for them as well.

There are a couple of housekeeping tips that need to be addressed before you advertise any job opening.

Having a clear job description is essential. This highlights the basic requirements of the position. It is not uncommon for many companies not to have written job descriptions. (I am not saying this practice is good.) Over the year’s, tasks were assigned to certain people and they alone were responsible. These same people were with the same company for 20+ years. Now as they leave or retire, we need to know what it takes to replace their knowledge.

When you ask an employee to list all the tasks they are responsible for and the tasks they know how to do, even if they are not held responsible for them, there are usually surprises. Employers and their managers are not always aware of who knows how to complete certain tasks, or better yet how they learned to do the tasks.

Don’t hesitate to get help to write job descriptions that will let you and the applicants know if they are qualified for the position.  They can help you write detailed job descriptions and step by step training manuals if needed. Be sure to remove the jargon and industry phrases from descriptions targeting new candidates. You want them to be accurate and appealing to attract the best humans for the job.

Emphasize the benefits your company has to offer. Make a complete list of everything that you do for your employees. This is your time to shine. Include, health care plans, retirement /401K packages, scheduling requirements and holiday schedules, company vehicle/computer/cell phone use, vacation/personal days, even pet insurance! Be sure to list any policy that gives the employee a chance to be appreciated or make their life easier!  Ask why you started offering this benefit, if there is still a need, or is there something missing you could add. Applicants want to know how you recognize and appreciate the worth of those who work for you. The benefits being asked for these days does vary a great deal from years past. Each generation has a different want or need for what they consider a benefit. Companies should look at this list be sure they are still needed, wanted, and more importantly viewed as a benefit by the staff. It is nice to see more weight being thrown at personal time than possibly just pay scales. It has been said many times that the mental health of our work force shows in their productiveness. Do your research and know what you can afford to offer. Learn what your team needs to happier and more successful for all of you.

There are many points to the hiring process. This is only the tip of the iceberg. We will address more ways to attract and retain great employees in the future. If there is something you are struggling with promoting let us know how we can help. We will get the information you need to be the best at hiring and retention, to help save you money and headaches. Email us today at contact@bowedigital.com.