One popular New Year’s Resolution is getting and staying organized! We don’t just mean your closet or pantry either. Get your to-do lists, files, and upcoming projects organized with these free tools. No matter your work style, there is a tool on this list that could help you and your team crush your 2021 goals!
Asana is an online Project Management tool that you can use with your team to stay on top of all upcoming projects. It is a great to use when collaborating because you can invite unlimited guest users. The tool can be used to see progress long term and to break out day-to-day tasks that will keep you on target to reach those goals. If you are part of a team that needs constant communication, Asana is a must-have online resource. The best part is there is a free plan for up to 15 people so even a small business can get a lot out of this tool.
If you like lists, Trello may be the best tool for you. You can create boards for each project and lists within them for things you want to get done. This platform offers great visuals and is easy to use as a team. You can share boards between users to keep everyone on the same page. The cards on each list can be moved from list to list to keep things organized as you progress through a project. There is a free plan offered by Trello but there are paid plans as well that upgrade some of the features.
Google Apps (Docs, Sheets, Slides, Calendar and Mail)
Google Apps are designed to be shared and the cloud-based storage makes it so you can access your files from anywhere. You can easily share your files with other contributors, and you can both work on them at the same time. Using the calendar in conjunction with mail will keep you up to date on all of your meetings and calls with the simple click of a button. These tools are powerful and run by a highly trusted company, so you never have to worry about losing an important document.
Sometimes you just need to get files to people. You don’t need to store them long-term or have a dedicated space for files being used in a collaboration. This is where WeTransfer comes in! It is a free online service where you upload your files, fill in the recipients contact info, and send it to them. The site sends you notifications when the file is sent, opened and when it is about to expire. It is a fast and secure way to send files without having to give up any of your storage space.
Pinterest has been around for years but is evolving year after year to fit the needs of its users. Did you know when Pinterest first started you had to have an invite from a user to join the site? They have come a long way! It is a great place to find inspiration and collect images onto boards to have for later. You can also create collaborative boards between team members so you can all pin ideas for projects and see each other’s inspiration.
Pen and Paper
Last, by certainly not least, is good old-fashioned pen and paper. If the online world is too much for you to jump into or if you just like having a physical connection to your to-do list, a pen and paper is all you need. Sometimes there is nothing more satisfying than literally crossing something off your to-do list. It leaves you with a great sense of completion. If you want to up your pen and paper game, look into bullet journals. There are so many resources out there on different lists you can create to help you stay on track and reach your goals!
We hope this list inspires you to look into some new and improved ways to stay organized in 2021. No matter how big or small your team, or the task at hand, these tools can help you stay on top of everything.
We want to take time at the end of the year to reflect on 2020 and how much your support has meant to us. To every single customer that supported us this year, we want to say, “Thank You!” We are so passionate about supporting small, local businesses, and we are glad you are too. We know this year has been a rollercoaster for everyone, but we have all worked together to come up with unique solutions to not just survive but thrive through these tough times.
We hope that you and your family have a safe and healthy holiday season. Some of you may not be having a normal Christmas this year, but we hope you're inspired to create new traditions. As we welcome the New Year, we hope that 2021 brings everyone the health and happiness they deserve.
We can’t wait to work with you in 2021 and continue supporting your businesses.
From all of us here at Berry Digital Solutions, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Heading into the holiday season we want to highlight a client of ours that focuses on giving back, Caring Kitchen. Every year they host a free Thanksgiving meal open to all Champaign County residents. They provide much more for the county than just one meal though. They offer emergency shelter services, a food pantry, a soup kitchen, tutoring, clothing and more all throughout the year. They are an outreach ministry in Champaign County that strives to advocate for and to provide services without discrimination to people in need.
This year, more than ever, our neighbors need us. Help them have a wonderful day with their family this Thanksgiving by donating a food item or monetary gift to the Caring Kitchen. Here is a list of items they are still collecting:
If you are able to donate any of the items listed above, please drop off by Friday, November 20th to Caring Kitchen at 300 Miami St. in Urbana. You can also donate a monetary gift by going to their website and looking at the donations page. There you can also find a list of ongoing items they are currently in need of. Keep an eye out again around Christmas for another meal donation collection, as well as food boxes they put together for local families.
If you would like to attend the Thanksgiving Day meal, or participate as a volunteer, call 937-653-8443. They will have carryout times from 11:00am-12:30pm and deliveries from 10:30am-12:30pm on Thursday, November 26th. Please help us spread the word by sharing with your friends and family so we can make this holiday season special for all of our neighbors here in Champaign County.
The Holiday shopping season is quickly approaching! This year is going to be a little different from any year before, but there are things you can do to make sure your store is prepared for this shopping season. Here are five things you should consider adding to your holiday plan:
With a lot of retail shops having limited space for customers this year, people have started to get creative as to where shopping can take place. You could set up a tent outside your store to have more room and show off your product to people walking by. Also, consider expanding into an empty space for the season. If there is a building in town for rent, see if you can rent it month to month and have a second location to double your traffic.
Keeping your online store up-to-date is going to be very important this year. If there are any upgrades for tracking inventory you have been putting off now is the time to make those happen. Anything that will help you keep your online store running smoothly will be beneficial. More shoppers than ever before are going to be shopping online exclusively this year, but that doesn’t mean they can’t still shop local!
The holiday season is a time when a lot of retail shops extend their hours anyway, but you might want to consider how you add those hours to your schedule. This spring and summer we saw many stores open early for seniors and immune compromised individuals. If you want to attract those buyers, it might be good to have some morning hours specifically for them, along with later evening hours for people who work 9-5.
If you are reading this, you should already have an idea of what your holiday shopping season will look like for your retail location. People are going to start shopping early and trying to beat the rush. This even applies to online shopping because there have been many reports that shipping this year is going to take much longer than normal. Don’t wait until after Thanksgiving to start your Christmas marketing!
With shipping times taking longer, store having less capacity, and people still socially distancing, having a curbside pickup option can change the game! People can shop locally and get the product the same day all from the comfort of their home and car. It is the best of both worlds, bringing online shopping and shopping local together in the perfect way.
If your business hasn’t started thinking about how to make the most of the holiday season yet hopefully there are some ideas on this list that can help. We hope everyone has an amazing holiday season and we encourage everyone to think about shopping local. More money spent local will stay local and it will help our neighbors all have a happy holiday season!
We all know that color plays a big role in the way people perceive a brand, whether they realize it or not. Color, and the psychology behind it, have been used for many years as a way to get people to do certain things, shop certain places, eat certain foods and more. Let’s talk about the ways color does the talking for you and what it is saying. We will also show some color combos and how pairings of colors can even further relay the message.
Blue is often seen as a peaceful, calm, stable and trustworthy color. This color often reminds people of the sea or the sky. Be careful though because it can also remind people of sadness and coldness. If your brand uses a lighter shade of blue, it can signify innocence and openness. Darker shades of blue often represent professionalism and make people feel like the brand is mature and trustworthy. This color is often a background player and is best paired with a bright attention-grabbing color.
Red is one of the most intense and captivating colors. It drives action and captures attention. It is often associated with excitement, passion, danger, action, and energy. It can provoke strong emotions both positive and negative, so it needs to be used carefully. On a website it is often used as a call to action getting people to click a button, notice a sale, or just learn more about a product. Using the color red is one of the fastest ways to grab attention!
Yellow is closely associated with sunshine. It gives people the feeling of happiness, optimism, positivity, and warmth. Using the color yellow within your core brand colors is a great way to show that interacting with your business is going to be a positive experience for the consumer. This bright, vibrant color grabs attention in a way that red fails to. People are drawn to its positivity and it can impact the way people interact with your brand. It is one of the easiest colors to visibly see and is the first color infants respond to!
Orange is another amazing attention attracting color. It often gives the feeling of creativity, adventure, enthusiasm, and success. While not as commanding as red, it is still used often as a call to action color on websites. The energy that orange creates gets people excited about your brand and gets their curiosity flowing. It has also been shown to stimulate appetite which makes it a great brand color for restaurants!
Green is very connected to nature. It gives people the thought of growth, health, nature, and serenity. Often used within brands that are connected to nature or health in some way, green is a great color to ground people with. It makes them feel like they are connected to nature and that your brand is as well. The only negative connection people make with green is a sense of greed or envy, so be mindful when choosing the correct shade for your business.
No matter what color you choose to go with it is also important to have secondary and background colors that pair well together. Your main color will be the color that effects customers most directly, but you can use these ideas about color theory to pair elements together and use color to your advantage. There is so much more to learn about colors and how they are used in marketing, but we hope this gives you a good starting point when thinking about branding your business.
The West Liberty United Methodist Church hosts their Annual Ice Cream Social every July with the intent of raising money for a local family in need. This year, because of restrictions and precautions due to COVID-19, they had to cancel this event. The event usually involves many local churches and organizations, as they call come together for one cause. The highlight each year is the homemade ice cream but there are always other great things to enjoy like sandwiches, homemade chicken and noodles, a variety of desserts, and live music!
Last year, during a difficult time in the Berry’s lives, WLUMC dedicated their Ice Cream Social event to helping raise money for them. The love and support they show local families during difficult times does not go unnoticed. The Berry family was extremely touched by the generosity last year. Ryan has attended this event his entire life and being on the other side last year made it even more special for him and his family. The Berry family can’t wait for next year to be able to attend the event and give back to another family or individual in need.
Although the event this year has been cancelled, the church is looking forward to 2021 and making the next one even better. Make sure you don’t miss the next Ice Cream Social by following the West Liberty United Methodist Church on Facebook to keep up to date on all of their upcoming events.
Along with the Ice Cream Social, the WLUMC supports the community in many other ways. Once a month they partner with the Food Resource Bank of Springfield to distribute food to families and individuals in need. They also prepare hot meals for the Caring Kitchen in Urbana on the fourth Saturday of each month. To learn about more ways the WLUMC helps the community, you can visit their website. If you are interested in becoming involved with the church, and the many ways they help the community, you can contact them by phone at 937-465-3732 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
You may have heard the term SEO before, and you may even know that it is VERY important, but do you really know what it means or how it benefits your business? SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and is the act of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website using organic search engine results. Sounds great right? Here are five ways your business will benefit from having amazing SEO set in place.
If you think your business could benefit from improved SEO give us a call today or send us a message. You can find all of our contact info here. We can’t wait to help your business grow!
We are so excited to introduce our client, Champaign Residential Services, Inc. (CRSI). Their mission and philosophy are “To empower and support individuals with challenges to provide an opportunity to develop their maximum level of independence as they choose. It is the intent of CRSI to value lifestyles and choices by all individuals served.” Their corporate office is right here in Champaign County, but they provide services to 22 different counties in Ohio.
They work hard to build support systems for the individuals they serve. One of the important roles in this system is the Direct Support Professional (DSP). These are the people that work directly with individuals with developmental disabilities to help them realize their full potential. This role is not about caregiving but is about helping people learn to live their lives to their fullest and learn new skills to make their lives easier. DSPs help people become integrated and engaged in the community in ways they might not have been before.
This week, September 14-19th, is Direct Support Professional Week. To celebrate this important career, we want to highlight some of the things that these individuals do every day to improve the lives of those they help. Starting first thing in the morning the DSP helps individuals get ready for the day by assisting with personal care and making breakfast. Each individual requires different attention based on their care plan, preferences, and progress. Once they are ready for the day, the DSP is their transportation to and from work and activities. Once the day is done, they help them get ready for the night by making them dinner, helping them get ready for bed and then spending time with them doing whatever they like to do to wind down.
On the surface it would seem that a DSP has a clear-cut job, but looking a little further there is so much more that goes into it. Many DSPs know that their attitude will affect the attitude of the individuals they help so they like to start their day off the right way with a positive outlook. They also provide friendship and companionship for these individuals and help them create those connections with others in the house or in the community. They learn so much about the individuals they help like their food preferences, their favorite music, and if they have family that comes to visit them on holidays. Sometimes the DSP plays a much bigger role in these individuals lives than they expected to, and amazing lifelong bonds are formed.
All of these things combined create the job of a DSP. At the end of the day they are there to help individuals with their personal growth in daily activities, communication, personal care, and so much more. Watching someone start to excel at something they couldn’t do before brings great joy and pride to one DSP, Tonya Van Winkle, at CRSI. She cites her time spent serving as a DSP at CRSI as one of the main reasons why she decided that once she graduates as an occupational therapist that she wants to continue to work with adults.
CRSI is an amazing resource right here in our own community. They help so many people live their lives to the fullest by giving them choices and providing options to them that they may not have had before. Their core values are positivity, respect, empowerment, teamwork and ownership. These values help the team at CRSI connect with all the individuals they serve in the best way possible providing an amazing space for growth and happiness. To learn more about CRSI, their core values, or how to join the team and start changing lives visit their website at https://www.crsi-oh.com.
Top Tech CEO's of Google, Apple, Amazon, and Facebook are all testifying today in congress on antitrust laws. Google found Berry Digital Solutions online and fell in love with their story. They loved the fact that they invest all of their resources back into their community. They wanted to share that story on a larger platform and chose to include their story in their prepared remarks to congress.
"I am deeply proud that because of our tools, businesses on main Street can compete in a way that wasn’t possible 20 years ago. For example, Berry Digital Solutions is a digital marketing firm in Urbana, Ohio, that supports local small businesses. They use Google tools to work remotely during the pandemic, coordinating meetings through Google Calendar and collaborating on content in Google Docs. They help their clients use Google Ads, and they appreciate that you only pay when someone clicks on your ad. The Berry Digital team also uses Google Analytics to learn more about the customers of their clients and how they can better serve them."
Ryan Berry met Google CEO Sundar Pichai on a video call last week and spent an hour sharing the story of technology in Urbana, Ohio. They discussed pivoting during Covid-19, how Google's tools were helping that process, what Google could do more of to support small businesses, and how important Google is to our local community. You can read more about the testimony here and read the prepared remarks below.
Many small and midsize businesses feel the need to hire a marketing employee full or part-time. They combine their payroll budget and their marketing budget to blend a role, with high hopes of accomplishing larger business success. The main issue to this approach is that it is extremely rare to find a single person to handle your entire marketing department. They may be a great photographer or graphic designer, but may not have experience with email marketing. They could be great at SEO and websites, but lack creativity. They may be gifted with engaging others with social media, but their grammar is consistently off. We have learned this as we have grown our team over time and have decided that instead of trying to find the perfect person for a marketing role, we would create it.
We aren't scientists in a lab creating the DNA of the next best marketer. We, instead, are a team of 40+ local experts who can provide their strengths, as you need them, to your business. We have a website team that works with our photographers and graphic designers to ensure your website both looks great and performs well. We have a social media team that works with our web team to ensure the strategy is working and can be verified through analytics. We have a video team that makes sure the content created will be viable on your website and social media. We have email, content, blog writing, website, and many other teams working together to ensure your digital marketing strategy is working for you.
The best part? You also get a designated team member who works in your building, understands your mission and processes, has a relationship with your team, attends your leadership and marketing meetings, and is your one contact to relay all information to and from our team. In other words, we make it simple. We also make it affordable.
Below is everything we provide to you with our Berry Digital Solutions #DreamTeam:
-Content Creation/Blog Writing
-40 Hours/mo Designated Employee in Your Building
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation to better understand how our team is the last marketing employee you will ever need to hire!
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