The Facteur PR Holiday Gift Guide 2019

The holiday season is quickly approaching, and while it is our favorite time of the year, it can also be super stressful when it comes to gifting. To help you out, we have assembled the perfect gift ideas for all the people in your life. As always, all of the gifts featured below are created by our lovely clients, all of which are independently-owned businesses.

For the Wellness-meets-Design Enthusiast 

These luxurious sheets from Naturepedic are a great choice for the person who likes the finer things in their gorgeous home. With 400 thread count, and certified organic cotton, these sheets are worry (and toxin) free! Carry on the wellness at home theme with the distinctly designed candles from L’or de Seraphine. The holiday gift set features delicious notes of holly, berry, and cardamom. Bonus: the gorgeous containers are reusable and can be used on your office desk, bathroom, or coffee table as a vase once candle has been completely burned!

l’or de seraphine holiday gift set, $38

l’or de seraphine holiday gift set, $38

Organic Cotton 400 Thread Count Luxury Sheet Set, various prices

Organic Cotton 400 Thread Count Luxury Sheet Set, various prices

For the Clean Beauty Buff  

This person is always game to try the best the beauty industry has to offer. Winter-blues will have nothing on them after using the Ritual Wellness Kit from ODE Natural Beauty. Not only will they be spiritually healthy, but their skin will also be glowing, too! To keep them flawless, help them say goodbye to any spots with Avarelle Cosmetics Acne Patches. These powerful little stickers clear up acne in a pinch, and you can even hide them under makeup! Great stocking stuffer or part of a larger clean beauty gift set.

ODE X 10,000 BUDDHAS RITUAL WELLNESS KIT: FOR HEALTH, $68

ODE X 10,000 BUDDHAS RITUAL WELLNESS KIT: FOR HEALTH, $68

Avarelle cosmetics acne cover patches, $8.50

Avarelle cosmetics acne cover patches, $8.50

For the Perfect Hostess

You’ve probably attended more functions at this person’s house this year than you can count. Treat them to something nice with a gift from Maison Maison, a gorgeous interior design shop in Rocky River. They have chic decor pieces and smaller gifts perfect for the foodie host in your life. If you want memories to last a lifetime, a giggle-inducing Guest Book like this one from Free Period Press hits the mark. Your host will love looking through the fun writing prompts and drawings from friends. 

Maison Maison Gifts, various prices

Maison Maison Gifts, various prices

Come Over All The Time Guest Book, $20

Come Over All The Time Guest Book, $20

For the Holiday Jet-Setter

You couldn’t keep this person in one place for long! Keep them looking and feeling good with travel-friendly skincare to get their glow on the road. Heading somewhere warm but lost your summer tan? This Mocha-Kyssed Bronzer + Booster from Mystic Tan is super easy to apply, and there is no need for a rinse-off in a few hours! Follow it up with the travel-sized essentials from the OY-L Bon Voyage Kit to keep their skin free from toxins, whether in the city or on the beach. 

Mocha-Kyssed Bronzer + Booster, $14.99

Mocha-Kyssed Bronzer + Booster, $14.99

Bon Voyage Kit, $53

Bon Voyage Kit, $53

The Little Ones  

Presents for the little ones are presents for mom and dad, too! An adorable hometown pride onesie from Whiskey Island Clothing is a great choice for parents who love to show off their love of Cleveland. A positive social skills enforcing Slumberkins from the adorable Van Aken district boutique Double Rainbow will bring peace of mind to mom and dad while providing a snuggly companion for the little ones. We love this adorable Hammerhead version! 

Whiskey Island Clothing baby onsie, $15

Whiskey Island Clothing baby onsie, $15

Slumberkins Hammerhead Snuggler, $36 and Hammerhead Board Book, $9.99

Slumberkins Hammerhead Snuggler, $36 and Hammerhead Board Book, $9.99



We hope you have been inspired by this list of goodies, and we definitely encourage you to click around on the sites to find even more great ideas! Happy Holidays from all of us at FACTEUR!

Seven ways to elevate your holiday marketing

Happy holidays from FACTEUR PR! No, it’s not quite time for tinsel and mistletoe, but as marketing professionals, we’re thinking about the giving season far before the lights are up and the snow ever hits the ground. Your brand will benefit from getting in the spirit, too! Thankfully, we’ve put together a list of holiday marketing ideas that are quick, actionable, and will help you transition gracefully into the most wonderful time of the year.

Create a holiday-or-seasonal-themed giveaway on Instagram — posts + stories directing to the posts — We know, we know. Sometimes giveaways can seem counterproductive to what you’re trying to achieve! Trust us when we say there’s nothing but goodness that lies ahead when planning a giveaway. We recommend following a few guidelines in order to have the most successful campaign possible. First things first: assemble the products that will make up the ideal holiday gift giveaway! If you have business friends whose goods fit your wintertime package, all the better. Invite them to be a part of the fun, adding to the volume and value of the giveaway while gaining exposure themselves. Once you’ve got the goods in one place, snap a beautiful photo of the whole set-up, and if you’d like to create a series, get some photos of each individual product, so followers have an idea of all the goodies they’ll receive as a part of your promotion. Next, one clear Instagram post users can share is key to generating the most traffic to your feed! Make sure your profile is public, and encourage contestants to share the post on their Instagram story for a valid entry, as well as tagging friends in the comments for increased exposure. As a rule of them, you can encourage them to tag each user in a separate comment, upping the comment count and bringing more traffic to the post!

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Transition into a brand new season with seasonally related email marketing — Email newsletters work wonders — they’re an affordable marketing and communications platform that allow you to communicate with customers who genuinely want to hear what you’re up to. Subtle tweaks can make a big impact, and your e-mail newsletter is not excused! By now, you’ve maybe gotten a bit tired of your template, so switch things up by adding in some new color, design or sections into your layout. With the biggest shopping season of the year around the corner, less and more can both be, well, more. Less works well when trying to give choice-averse customers a streamlined view of a product. And more works great when attempting to provide for the overwhelmed shopper, the one who has no idea how she’s going to purchase gifts for that member and that member and that member of her large family or friend group. So, get more creative! Incorporate content, like GIFs, videos, coupons, photos, discount codes if you haven’t utilized them before. And most importantly, pay attention to what's resonating and what's not.

Bring a darker (or brighter!) version of your color palette into your campaigns — You’d be surprised what a quick refresh can do for your brand! If you’ve been sticking with an assigned color palette for awhile — say, something more pastel — it can’t hurt to transition to a more moody, wintry line-up for the cooler months. Keep the other elements of your brand the same, but play with color, even if it’s just a change in your social media logos. Customers will note this as relevancy, recognizing you’re changing and adjusting with the seasons and keeping social content fresh and updated. It can be fun to welcome new colors into email newsletters and posters as well, creating a spin on the things viewers are used to.

Include a number of holidays into your marketing plan to remain sensitive + welcoming to all denominations/traditions — The holidays are an all-encompassing time. Yes, Christmas gets much of the attention, but Hanukkah and Kwanzaa among others are also widely observed holidays in America as well, and brands will be lauded as respected and respectful if we recognize the depth of what “the holidays” entails. On that same coin, some individuals choose not to celebrate at all. It’s challenging to cater to all walks of life as a business owner, but acknowledging support and solidarity for those of all faith and holiday traditions doesn’t go unnoticed – not just during the holiday season, but year-round, too. And don’t be afraid to acknowledge your own celebration as well — talk about what you do, what you’re excited for and what you observe! It’s good to add a personal anecdote to your marketing plan every once and awhile. The holidays at their core are a time of celebration, and we have a platform to help customers feel included in that.

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Direct people to your website and using the platform to offer holiday deals — driving traffic to the domain + therefore exposing customers to the online shop more easily — Funneling consumers toward your website is always a good idea especially if your website exists to ultimate sell. It allows them to get the deepest understanding of who you are, what you do and how you create. By launching a new site or simply including a link to your website in social media bios, on fliers, etc., you are opening your website up to be the driving force of your business. You probably spent a lot of time compiling everything to that one special place. Around the holidays, when you feel especially pulled in multiple directions, it’s important to have one owned channel that allows the buyer (and you) to center. With so many brands competing for attention near the giving season, advertising impressive deals on your most sought-after goods and services will make things go quick! Pay attention to what’s flying off the shelves to begin with, and create a 24-hour-only deal around it that will be impossible to pass up.

Pay attention to Internet holiday trends for the season, specifically pop culture — Let’s face it: customers love the now! Get them hooked with something easily shareable — and preferably related to the holidays — that connects and captivates. Classic holiday pop culture is always a winner, and keeping your finger on the pulse of the current season is even more impressive. The consumer wants to know you care — that you’ll respond to them quickly, that they’ll get their products efficiently, that you’ll inform them of any mishaps immediately — and one of the best ways of showing they can trust that is by staying up to date with the good tidings and joy happening around you!

Create a consistent Instagram stories template featuring key products of note — We can’t think of a more accessible platform than an Instagram story. At FACTEUR, we consider Stories its own social media platform with its own strategy despite it being part of Instagram. It’s a quick and easy way to communicate to your target audience without cluttering an already noisy feed. There are plenty of templates available on apps like Canva, Unfold and a Design Kit, that allow for customizable and beautiful stories, all done in a moment’s time. By coming up with a simple color palette and making minimal font decisions, your stories can be simultaneously visually pleasing and informative. Soon enough, followers will start to know what to expect from your content, making for a simpler shopping decision and better brand recognition. Make sure to highlight key pieces in your shop you’d like people to know about when doing their holiday shopping — big items, small stocking stuffers and everything in between.

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Now that you’ve picked up a few quick tips from us, put them into action for your ultimate holiday marketing campaigns! Your goods and services will surely be flying off the shelves. Bundle up with a blanket and a cup of hot tea, and put these steps to the test. Happy holidays!

FACTEUR PR welcomes two new members to its team

We are so excited to welcome two new members to the FACTEUR PR team!

Janet Lueken

Janet Lueken
Public Relations Specialist

Janet Lueken has joined the FACTEUR PR team as its Public Relations Specialist after residing in the United Kingdom for three-and-a-half years. Her role is primarily focused on earning traditional and digital media coverage for the studio’s roster of lifestyle clients.

While living across the pond in Manchester, Janet worked as a freelance blogger and digital marketing consultant for a local baby company. She managed the company’s social media accounts, blogged for the brand’s website, and more.

Janet’s experience in Cleveland before her move abroad included working at WEWS-TV as the station’s first ever social media specialist. Before that, she managed the local entertainment website, Metromix.com, at WKYC-TV. She began her career as a print journalist at daily newspapers in Lynchburg, Virginia and Sandusky, Ohio.

Janet is a graduate of Indiana University Bloomington (Journalism, Art History). She lives on Cleveland's west side with her husband and two children.

Abigail Halter

Abigail Halter
Marketing + Communications Intern

Abigail is a 2019 graduate of Saint Louis University where she studied Marketing and French. Her interests lie in social media management, digital content curation and events. Outside of FACTEUR PR, she works at Fount and Rise Nation.

Having moved out of state for college, she is excited to be back home working with lifestyle brands and businesses and to be part of what makes them so special. Abigail is an avid traveler, having been to all seven continents, and hopes to one day travel to every country.

We are so thrilled to have Janet and Abigail on the team – congratulations to them in their new roles!

Learn more about the FACTEUR PR team here.


FACTEUR featured in Martha Stewart

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While our primary objective at FACTEUR PR is supporting our clients – of which many are PR clients – it is always an immense honor to be recognized by the press for the work that we do, as well.

FACTEUR Founder + Director, Reena Goodwin, was recently interviewed by Martha Stewart in a story called “How to Tell Your Story (and Build a Brand) Through Social Media.”

Social media isn't just a way to pass idle time (or to find inspiration for your next decorating project). It's a valuable tool to tell your business' story and build your brand. As Reena Goodwin, founder and director of Facteur PR, explains, social media gives business owners a direct line to current and potential customers. "By creating and sharing high-quality content and stories, social media opens a door to share a brand's story on a deeper and more direct level," Goodwin says. "When a brand shares its story on social media, that story helps build trust. And because a brand's reputation is ultimately built on trust, it's an important medium for any brand to harness."

Big thanks to Jillian Kramer and Martha Stewart for including us! Read the full story here.

Timing is everything: pitching for the holidays

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October is always the time of year when we, as consumers, start thinking about the holidays coming in the next few months. Fall has finally arrived, temperatures are dropping, and the leaves are changing color. As the excitement for the upcoming season fills our mind, we often forget that now is the most important time to get focused, and get critical work done in order to reap the rewards in the upcoming holiday season. 

You’re still in luck: digital is normally more widely read, and it’s not too late to be considered for any online gift guides. 

Why should I pitch during the holidays at all? 

Consumers start looking for their gifts as early as mid-summer and 53% of them research before making a purchase. Your media exposure and visibility becomes very important in the months that they’re looking and narrowing down their decisions because they’re open and receptive to trying new products and brands. Features lend to the legitimacy they are looking for in the pages of the content they consume, in both print and digital. While it’s too late to pitch for print, you’re still in luck: digital is normally more widely read, and it’s not too late to be considered for any online gift guides. 

Why should I pitch editors now when the holidays are still two-three months away? 

We have said this many times here at FACTEUR, but timing is so very critical to success. If you don’t start now, you are going to be too late in most cases. 

Editors for large publications, especially publications with print editions, begin work on their holiday edition in July. Work slows down for them in December, and their work is finalized way before then. So, if you’re sending your press mailers to editors in November, they probably already gave your spot to someone someone who sent theirs now – in early October. 

Editors are getting hundreds of pitches, what will make me stand out, and ultimately get featured in their holiday content?

A good thing to keep in mind when pitching is that you have something that editors need or want (or don’t know they need or want yet). Their sites have to be full of the best or most interesting products and services, and they’re working extra hard to bring the most relevant and best of the best to their audience. Sounds a lot like what you’ve got, doesn't it?! 

We recently discussed in the office that it is more effective to come to the editor with a solution rather than a question when pitching. If you have the perfect fit for that one very specific gift for that one very specific person- let them know! Consider adding phrases like “this would be perfect to include in a gift guide for your boss,” rather than “would this fit into any of your gift guides?” You may spark even more ideas for their coverage, making them more likely to include you, rather than just sifting through another bland pitch. 

The most important thing to remember is that it is better to be early than anything else, and fashionably late only applies to socialites arriving at a party. As much as we love a good party, as publicists and editors we have to be on top of the game for the best results. 

> Work with FACTEUR PR  

> Sign up for The DIY PR Project



We're hiring!

FACTEUR-PR-Reena-Goodwin

FACTEUR PR is growing and we’ve got a few empty seats that need filling!

We are a boutique studio that offers a blend of public relations, social media, content marketing, and digital creative services for emerging and established lifestyle brands and businesses (more specifically, in industries like beauty, home, retail, design, food + drink, health + wellness). We work with clients in Northeast Ohio and across the United States from our office in Ohio City – and soon, London, too!

We're currently looking for candidates with a passion for lifestyle brands and experience in marketing–media relations to fill the roles of:

Applications may be submitted through the links directly above.

London Calling: Hannah is heading across the pond!

Hannah Krisinski, Digital Communications Assistant

Hannah Krisinski, Digital Communications Assistant

We are super excited to announce that one-third of FACTEUR PR is moving to LONDON! Hannah is moving across the pond for grad school, and while earning her master's degree in Promotional Media: Public Relations, Advertising & Marketing, she'll be continuing her great work at FACTEUR in the newly created role of Digital Communications Assistant! ⁠⁠

Hannah joined the FACTEUR team in March 2018 as a PR intern while studying at Cleveland State University. Since then, she’s been an important team member for both FACTEUR and its roster of lifestyle clients, collaborating on projects for brands like ODE Natural Beauty, Sunless Inc., Naturepedic, InCuya Music Festival, AEG Presents, L’or de Seraphine, Oak + Honey Event Planning Co., FreeRange SkinCare, and more.

From the UK, Hannah will continue to play an expanded role in the growth of FACTEUR PR as well as for our clients and community as she furthers our public relations and social media efforts remotely.

We are so proud of you, Hannah! While we will miss seeing you in the office here in Cleveland, we're thrilled to keep you on the team as you follow your dreams – and as you open up the London office! ;). ⁠⁠Leave your well wishes for Hannah in the comments! ⁠

Based in the United Kingdom? Interested in working together? Contact us!

Related: Apply for our Fall/Winter Internship!

Five key components to include in your 2020 marketing plan

Marketing Plan Template 2020

If you’re a business owner or an entrepreneur, chances are you want sales and recognition year round – and therefore, you’re going to want to be marketing your business year round, as well. If instead you treat your campaigns like a quick fix solution to a problem, that’s all you’re going to get. But if you’re looking to build, sustain, or elevate your brand over time, grow your business genuinely, attract customers who will buy, and increase your revenue, then you need to develop a plan.

A plan sets us up for success first and foremost by establishing and managing expectations for the year ahead and eliminates distraction. It turns ideas into action and helps us be proactive with the work we are doing. And research has shown that when we have a plan, we are more likely to achieve our goals.

Here are five key areas your marketing plan must include:

1. A vision

The first thing we need to consider when putting our plan together is the mission of our brand, business, or organization. The mission states why your brand exists. It’s usually surrounding the ways you serve your audience. Your vision, on the other hand, is your higher purpose. What do you want to ultimately be or strive for?

The goal of our plan is to make our vision a reality. To do this, we need a strategy that articulates when and where we’ll utilize our resources to meet our goals, and the tactics are the actual how-tos when it comes to seeing your strategy through.

2. A summary of who is your target audience

If you’re speaking to everyone, you’re speaking to no one. Drill down to the specifics of who this marketing plan is going to be targeted towards. If you don’t know, then start with a survey of your e-mail newsletter list, your social media audience, and past customers or clients.

3. Goals + Objectives

You can pull this list from your business plan if you have one. If not, don’t worry. Take some time to think - where do you want your business to be a year from now? Two years? Five? 10? It’s so important to have your goals down on paper. Make them real and make them specific. For example, are your goals budget or sales related? Write them down. Is one of your goals to build your e-mail subscriber list or garner press coverage? (It should be!) Write that down, too.

4. Strategies and tactics

Our strategies should answer the question of how will we achieve our goals and objectives this year. Think about various campaigns you can launch, events you can produce, or services you might want to provide.

Tactics support these strategies. If you’re launching a campaign, you’re likely going to want to pitch the news to certain publications with enough time to maximize timing to garner attention and sell tickets, for example. You could also be your own media and develop guest blog posts and video and photo content.

5. Budget considerations

A plan should conclude with a page for the various resources you might need to budget. A few common ones for marketing and PR you’ll need to consider include photo shoots, mailing product, hiring any consultants, and so forth. Laying out this wish list will help you for your planning for the year ahead.

Are you ready to get started on your 2020 marketing plan?

Well guess what – we’ve made it easier with our ready-to-go template! In our 33-page file, you'll receive an organized, presentation-ready template for you to document your plan strategically and chronologically through the year. In addition to analysis exercises to nail down your goals and objectives – and what you need to do to achieve them – this template also includes space for a yearlong strategies summary and month-to-month plan. Specific sections of this template are customizable and include a summary, situation analysis, target audiences, goals & objectives, strategies, accompanying tactics, measurement milestones, and budget considerations.

Social media and story ideas for September

September content ideas

September is nearly here, which means summer is almost over (sadly)! But who else thinks fall is the best season? (We kinda do!) The approaching season has no shortage of great events that can serve as an inspirational source for blogging, and September is no exception. These ideas are also applicable to your social media and media relations pitches. To get you started, here are just a few opportunities this month to align your brand or business with some already note-worthy happenings online.

September is...

  • Better Breakfast Month

  • Whole Grains Month

  • Yoga Month

  • Healthy Aging Month

  • Self Improvement Month

  • Classical Music Month

Daily opportunities include...

September 2: Labor Day
September 6: National Read a Book Day
September 18: National Cheeseburger Day
September 21: International Day of Peace
September 22: First Day of Fall
September 25: One Hit Wonder Day
September 26: National Pancake Day
September 27: Women's Health & Fitness Day
September 28: Drink Beer Day
September 29: National Coffee Day
 

Want more content ideas for the year? These are just a few of the ones we've identified! We have developed four editorial content calendars specifically for the food & drink, arts & hobbies, health & wellness, and lifestyle industries. You can find them under the Instant Resources tab here on the FACTEUR website (and showcased below). We've pulled together social media, blogging, and PR opportunities based on monthly and daily holidays, hashtags, and high profile events that are related to each of those industries. Also included is a list of story ideas to get you started with developing your editorial plan, as well as space to brainstorm your own ideas. We're offering each calendar for $9, and if you buy all four with our Blogger Bundle, you basically get one free! Plus, every time we update the calendars, we'll make sure you'll get the newest iteration (at no extra charge, of course). Happy creating!

PIN THIS!

PIN THIS!

Five reasons The DIY PR Project might be right for you

If you follow FACTEUR PR on social media, you’ve probably seen us posting about The DIY PR Project, a digital public relations workshop for the small business owner on a budget. Have you considered enrolling but felt hesitant about whether or not it’s the right fit? Here are five reasons why The DIY PR Project might be perfect for you.

You’re on a tight budget (or have nearly no budget to devote to media relations efforts).

Let’s face it — while you’re establishing your brand, every dollar you put toward your business matters. It’s easy to have a rigid filter on what you spend your money on, so we want to make this course as financially accessible as possible! The five-part course, complete with workshop modules, workbooks, 24-hour response time from our team and more, costs $397 total. If you register before July 31, you can take $100.00 off your package as an early bird member. With the discount, that comes to $59.40 a week, where you have access to rapid accountability and motivation that will help you stay on track and on budget. The cost of hiring a publicist will land you anywhere from $50-$250 an hour.

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You’re a solopreneur.

Doing this alone can be a challenge! Thankfully, the project includes videos created by Reena S. Goodwin, the founder of FACTEUR PR. After working in the field for more than a decade, you can feel confident that you’re in good hands when it comes to learning from a reputable source. When you sign up for the course, you also gain access to a private Facebook group with other members of the project. You’ll have a safe space to ask and answer questions while forming a community in the meantime.

You’re in charge of marketing for a brand and want to learn PR, too.

We love that you’re interested in expanding your knowledge! While a job in marketing lends itself well to understanding public relations, there are definitely differences between the concentrations, and we’re here to help break them down. With our week-by-week set-up, you’ll get public-relations-centered content delivered to you every seven days, allowing you to take your time downloading information and putting it to action in each corresponding workbook. This intentional setup allows time to review the content at your own pace and establish any questions you may have. Coming from a marketing background, we’re sure you’ll bring valuable and unique insight to our group of DIY PR Project students!

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You’re interested in outsourcing PR, but first want to get an idea of how it all works.

There’s no better way to understand something than having hands-on experience. Through our informative and illustrative videos, you’ll get a first-hand look at the ins and outs of public relations work from an experienced professional who has landed coverage for clients in national media outlets like Elle, Forbes, and Refinery29. This workshop will show you how, helping you gain a valuable perspective of the practice of public relations and how the media works, with explanations delivered in simple and accessible format. After learning about the process, you can feel confident making decisions when it comes to next steps for the brand you represent.

You’ve tried to land publicity for your brand in the past and didn’t see results.

It’s challenging to spend lots of time on outreach and feel as if you’ve come up short. And while The DIY PR Project can’t guarantee results (because hey - you still need to do the work and build those relationships!), we can guarantee you’ll learn things you didn’t know before and feel educated and empowered to pitch your brand to the right editors. If you sign up for the optional Pitch Pack Review, we’ll spend time reviewing your workbooks and offer you written, from-the-heart feedback about where to make improvements and go next. And whether your media results are immediate or gradual, you will forever have access to our course materials and updates, with the ability to review them any time and pitch onward!

Interested in learning more and signing up?

The DIY PR Project officially launches on Thursday, August 1. Register by July 31 at save $100 on the course (plus, take $100 off the optional Pitch Pack Review with the code PITCH100 through July 31, too). Cold feet still? You can still sign up anytime after August 1, but just keep in mind the prices will increase at that point.