Making Mary with Top Tomato

John and Marina Backes at Circle B Ranch have been Checkmate clients for nearly two years. Here at Checkmate, we're obsessed with their Berkshire pork products, including pork chops, bacon, hickory smoked hams and small batch sauces that go with everything. So it's easy for us to help meet their marketing needs.

For nearly two years, we've helped develop Circle B Ranch's social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Sales from their website, circlebranchpork.com, have gone up every year since we've joined their team. But John and Marina were looking for a standout product. Then, Marina came up with something special: Top Tomato Cocktail Mix.

We were hooked on the first sip.

So when Marina asked us to develop a product launch website just for Top Tomato Cocktail Mix, we jumped at the chance to help promote this incredible cocktail mix.

Marina wanted her website to be easy to navigate, mobile-friendly and feature copy that was sassy to match her brand.  We had a lot of fun developing out this scroll through design, featuring bold call to action buttons, high-quality product shots provided by Checkmate Consulting and conversion opportunities back to the Circle B Ranch main page.

And instead of reinventing the wheel, we used the currently in place ecommerce engine through Circle B Ranch's main site to drive online sales. This made online executing and tracking online purchases easy for Marina on the back end and familiar to Circle B Ranch customers on the front end.

We're proud of not only our finished project, but also the speed in which it was executed. This web development project, from initial conversation to launch date, took less than 45 days. 

Here's to another successful Checkmate Consulting website.

SNEAK PEEK: Website launch for Linda Kay's Creations

Earlier this year, we formalized our commitment to telling the stories of great brands online by offering website development services to Checkmate Consulting clients. After an initial website launch earlier this year, we're excited to share we're at it again.

Linda Kay's Creations is our newest and boldest client, sharing amazing custom embroidery creations for thousands of Etsy shoppers every year. We're developing an intuitive, innovative digital catalog that showcases Linda's amazing and affordable products. From font choices to previous creations, Linda Kay's website will showcase the very best products she creates.

We can't wait for you to see it.


Building better websites

For the last two years, we've been providing the highest caliber of content and customer service for our customers at Checkmate Consulting. We've been tweeting, posting, liking and sharing, while building brand awareness and creating authentic, engaged communities for our customers.

It's been an exciting journey so far, and we're thrilled to announce the next step in our journey to being a full-service digital marketing agency.

As of March 1, we'll BEGIN OFFERING Website Design and Maintenance SERVICES.
 

But we didn't intend to go down this road as a company. In January, Mike Luebbering Construction contacted us to design, build and implement a simple, functional website for the family-owned construction company. We were tasked to tell their story simply and completely in two weeks.

Mike Luebbering Construction tasked us with building a website for the family-owned construction company. We did it -- and we did it in a week.

Mike Luebbering Construction tasked us with building a website for the family-owned construction company. We did it -- and we did it in a week.

Our team of digital communications experts with years of website development and creation experience built MikeLuebberingConstruction.com in less than week, tweaking and teasing out content on appropriate channels and testing our content before its launch today. And in less than 24 hours, Checkmate Consulting is happy to report that nearly 150 unique visitors have stopped by MikeLuebberingConstruction.com.

We're excited to be offering Website Design and Maintenance services for current and new Checkmate Consulting customers, who know the importance of a digital presence for their business and brand identity. But it's important to note that we are not web developers; we aren't creating a website from scratch. For our customers, we will be utilizing tried-and-true website management and online content management systems to create fully functional websites. We don't do the coding, we just provide the content and help you tell your story.

And your brand's story needs to be told.

3 Reasons To Have A Social Media Icon

For businesses that are consistently feeding information to their customers via social media, it's important that their brand identity doesn't get lost in the fray. Having a social media icon that has a simple, concise brand identity can help you break through the Twitter clutter. Here are three reasons why having a simple social media icon is important to your social media strategy.

1. Icons Are Recognizable

The resizing mechanisms on Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms make your 6-inch wide logo a blip in your clients' news feeds. Having a single design element that can be noticed even when it's only 73x73 pixels (or smaller on a mobile device) is social media gold, leading to more clicks and higher responses.

Here are a few examples of effective social media icons. 

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You instantly recognize their brands, but no one of these graphics include an obvious or full company name. Your brand's social media icon should have the same qualities.

2. Icons Are Modern

Logos, although a necessary part of your business, appear outdated on social media. They should a lack of attention to detail and are the first indication that a brand that isn't interested in having a current or contemporary social media presence. If a business is targeted to reach social-media savvy customers, it's particularly important to have a bold, vibrant social media icon. Good colors to use are light and medium blue, warm, soft yellows and cool greens. Ask a graphic designer to create five options, and pick the best one for your brand.

3. Icons Are Urgent

Your logo for your letterhead can be relatable, powerful and friendly (or at least a branding specialist told you that in 2003), but your logo and slogan won't be read on a mobile device. Modern, simple social media icons make a user pause and possibly read to the message. Your eye goes left to right, and an image that is easy to consume on your left can lead your eye to the right to read your content more consistently. 

You can have the best social media icon that works with your brand standards, but if you don't have a compelling message alongside your icon, your gorgeous icon won't generate leads, an increase in web traffic or brand loyalty. Find out about Checkmate Consulting's social media management services here