Christmas Tree Ideas: What To Do With Your Christmas Tree After Christmas

It’s time to consider the many ways Christmas trees can be used once the holidays are over.

Poor Christmas trees. They spend a whole season being decorated and adored; then, when the festivities are over, they’re left out by the curb. This year, we say, enough is enough, and look to answer one of life’s most overlooked questions: what do you do with your tree after Christmas? In order to answer this pressing question, we will post a new video every day from Dec 4th-14th. You can catch our holiday hijinks here on this blog or on our Facebook page. Need more Christmas tree ideas or other creative solutions? Give us a call.

#9: The holiday parking crunch inspired a new way to claim your own space.

#8: Underhanded. Sneaky. But festive!

#7: Who says you can’t have piney freshness everywhere you go?

#6: If your office ceiling is boring and flat, you haven’t been thinking big enough.

#5: “Sorry. It’s not you. It’s the tree.” Our brilliant method for avoiding post-holiday small talk.

#4: If you can’t say something nice about someone, show your contempt with flair.

#3: Forget everything you know about key fobs. The whole fob industry is about to be disrupted.

#2: Your friends will be dazzled by what you can do with a cocktail shaker, some spirited beverages and a tree.

#1: Our CD has never gotten over the shattering experience of losing his hair. But we think we’ve got a solution.

Need more Christmas tree ideas?

At RLM, we love thinking up engaging, impactful ideas and bringing them to life. If you need more creative solutions that aren’t Christmas tree ideas—like a logo design, new website, or branding revamp—we’re happy to apply ourselves. (Although, to be honest, we did have a lot of fun.)

Happy holidays from all of us at Red Letter Marketing!

RLM Holiday Blog: Christmas Stuff We No Longer Grasp

For this year’s holiday blog, we present our observations on yuletide traditions that are mildly confusing.

All of us at Red Letter Marketing adore holiday customs and lore—even when we’re not really sure what they mean. Some traditions have been around so long that we in the 21st century find ourselves befuddled by them. For this year’s holiday blog, we’ve crafted a review of some of the odder Christmas customs, which we still love despite our befuddlement.

Father Christmas

You’ve heard of Father Christmas. And you have no idea who he is. You run through the options: Maybe Santa? But there is already a name for Santa and it goes like this: “Santa.” So, clearly that’s not it. Could Father Christmas be Jesus? Somehow calling our Lord and Savior “Father Christmas” seems vaguely sacrilegious. So who is this enigmatic paternal figure? Of course you could spend less than one minute on Google and dispel the mystery—but where’s the fun in that?

Smoking Bishop

You may think we’re making this up but no, this holiday-related term shows up in A Christmas Carol. “Smoking Bishop” sounds both hilarious and vaguely disturbing. While we here at Red Letter always strive to provoke laughter tinged with discomfort, we cannot claim this one as our own invention. Is the term a metaphor? If it is not metaphorical but literal—why would a bishop smoke? Everyone knows the habit is not healthy and sets a bad example for the kids. We’d tell you what a smoking bishop is but we just ran out of space.

Tiny Tim’s Crutch

We’re overjoyed when we learn, at the end of A Christmas Carol, that Tiny Tim did NOT die, thanks to the generosity of All-New Scrooge. But what, exactly, did Tiny Tim suffer from? Dickens did not specify—perhaps because Victorian London was so thick with sickly children that his readers didn’t need details. It was enough to know that Tiny Tim was the youngest child of a poor family; he had a crutch; and he was doomed. Sadly, Tiny’s bleak situation was totally normal at the time. Modern readers are truly blessed to be clueless about all this.

Vixen and Blitzen

We’ve all heard “’Twas the Night Before Christmas” so many times that we don’t even notice the weird stuff, such as the borderline-disturbing names of a few of the reindeer. Everybody’s fine with Dancer and Prancer—it is plausible that reindeer can prance and dance, especially if they are the special breed of reindeer that can also fly. But what is up with the name Vixen? Let’s just put it on the table: the name “Vixen” is not kid-appropriate. And then there’s this: Blitzen! This is the German word for lightning. If we’re going to name a reindeer using a foreign word for lethal electricity, could we at least consider French or Italian? The word “Blitzen” actually sounds like you’re getting zapped with 10,000 volts.

Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire

This holiday treat sure sounds toasty ’n’ delicious! Wouldn’t it be great if the world we actually live in featured chestnuts roasting on an open fire? Why, yes! Yes it would. But open-fire chestnuts are the Sasquatch of holiday treats. We kind of want them to exist, but we’re pretty sure we’ll never see them. But hang on, people—let’s not just passively accept this fate. The modern world makes almost anything possible. Perhaps we can mount a campaign to persuade Williams & Sonoma to offer an “Open Fire Chestnut Roaster” for a reasonable price.

A One-Horse Open Sleigh

The whole premise here is an engineering fraud. We’re asked to imagine a vehicle going over fields—(sorry, “o’er” fields)—carrying a passel of passengers, and the ride is so sweet that everybody aboard is supposedly laughing all the way. Reality check: nobody’s going to be laughing in a vehicle propelled by a horsepower of one! There will be no “dashing.” That ride is going to be a stop-and-start affair the whole time. Will the bells on bobtails ring? Possibly—but only in the short stretches where the sleigh is jolting forward, before stopping again to let that poor horse take a breather.

Thanks for checking out our holiday blog.

Wishing you and yours a merry Christmas, 

Your friends at Red Letter Marketing

What’s On Your Whiteboard?

What’s On Your Whiteboard?

Every desk at RLM has at least three screens and often more on display: multiple computer monitors, smart phones, and tablets. But our favorite brainstorming and puzzle solving tool is the good old whiteboard. Our main conference room has a 14 foot whiteboard that inspires team members and clients alike to bigger thinking. Every desk has at least one within arm’s reach, and you never know what you’ll see on them.

Research has shown that our brains are more active when we stand, move around, and physically write things down rather than typing into a keyboard. If our whiteboards could talk, they would have many a tale to tell of coding puzzles solved, site maps brainstormed, and headlines rewritten. In the spirit of sharing the chaotic processes of our creative and strategic minds, we thought to put our brains on display – well, our boards (less invasive).

20151001_140106-OlafHere you see the rare inner-workings of German design. This is the board of our Lead Designer, Olaf. Don’t ask us what any of this means. And don’t ask Olaf either. He’s concentrating.

20151001_140148-JonathanOrDesignerOpposite Olaf’s musings you’ll see the board between Garrett, another member of the design team. He can tailor a page like a fine suit, but don’t look toward the top right –it looks like he struggles with analog clocks.

Olaf

We don’t know what Olaf is doing here, but it looks important. Plotting the shortest way to getting his Costco shopping done, perhaps.

Nerf!-20151002-08White board strategy was the key to our Nerf War Victory over our sister company, Dynamic Quest. Here, Marcy plots hallway ambush tactics.

whiteboard-20151002-15-SeanSean always has some sort of strategy plotted out on his white board. And by the way, he is a doting daddy, can you tell?

20151001_140341This board hangs in the office of our creative director, Mike. On this particular occasion the board features a sketch of a print ad; a to-do list, without which Mike would be rudderless; a new floor plan for our office; a rudimentary Gantt chart and a couple of photos of his grandkids. Somehow, he failed to include a sketch of a kitchen sink.

whiteboard-20151002-14-Kitchen

We even keep a whiteboard in the breakroom that rotates subjects every few days. If someone has an idea, they throw it up there and wait for retorts as we swim in and out for coffee, tea, and (on Fridays) our front-end developer Scott’s biscuits. This board is from last fall, when the Carolinas saw unprecedented rainfall.

Some of our clients like to have meetings at our place rather than theirs, just so they can write on our giant white board. But we can’t show those.

Thanks for stopping by!

RLM Marketing Madness: The Final Four

Last Update:  Tuesday, April 5

SEMrush is the 2016 RLM Marketing Madness Champion!

SEMrush capped an amazing tournament run with a buzzer beater upset victory over giants Google Analytics in the Finals of the RLM Marketing Madness Tourney!  After making it through the earlier rounds with impressive victories over social media superstars Sprout Social and Simply Measured as well as a tough win over rival Moz, SEMrush seemed destined to go all the way.  Thanks to all of the 16 great marketing tools that participated in the tournament.  We saw some riveting matchups this year and are already looking forward to next year’s tournament.

For a complete recap of the tournament action, follow RLM on Twitter and/or search for #MarketingMadness.

RLM Marketing Madness Final Bracket


 

Semifinal Results

@Sprout Social vs @SEMrush – SEMrush wins and advances to the Championship

@GoogleAnalytics vs @Optimizely  –GoogleAnalytics wins and advances to the Championship

 


Elite 8 Results Recap

Survive and advance.  That is what tournament time is all about, and it is no different for our 2016 RLM Marketing Madness Tournament.  After two intense rounds of marketing tool battles we are down to the Final Four!

Sprout Social enters the semifinal round riding high after escaping with a win over social media rivals Hootsuite in Round 2.  Optimizely is leaving a trail of marketing automation dust behind as it advanced with tough victories over powerful platforms Hubspot and Marketo.  In a difficult SEO matchup, SEMrush muscled out an impressive victory over feisty Moz to book their place in the Final Four.  And, in the final Elite 8 matchup, it was Google Analytics bouncing email marvels MailChimp from the competition to round out the Final Four.

The Final Four will tip off on Thursday March 31st featuring Sprout Social vs SEMrush in the first semifinal and Google Analytics vs Optimizely in the second semifinal.


Each match up was decided by a 24-hour Twitter poll.  The team with the most votes advanced to the next round.

For a complete recap of the tournament action, follow RLM on Twitter and/or search for #MarketingMadness.

The Madness Marches On! 

The Elite 8! Round 2 of RLM Marketing Madness

Round 2:  Elite 8 Matchups Set for Monday, March 28th!

Updated March 29

ROUND 2 SCHEDULE

1 @Hootsuite vs  2 @SproutSocialSprout Social advances to the Final Four!

3 @Marketo  vs  4 @OptimizelyOptimizely advances to the Final Four!

1 @Moz  vs  3 @SEMrushSEMrush advances to the Final Four!

1 @GoogleAnalytics  vs  2 @MailChimp  – Google Analytics advances to the Final Four!

After a whirlwind Sweet 16 round, we are down to 8 teams left in the 2016 RLM Marketing Madness Tournament. We have some amazing matchups slated for Round 2.  Social media superstars Sprout Social and Hootsuite face off to battle it out for a spot in the Final Four.  We will also see two SEO powerhouses, Moz and SEMRush, go head-to-head in the second round!  On the other side of the bracket heavy hitters Google Analytics will try to “convert” a victory over MailChimp.  Will MailChimp face a “hard bounce” from the tournament or will the team deliver and start “clicking” at just the right time? Rounding out the Elite 8, an Optimizely upset over Hubspot in the first round sets them up for another marketing automation matchup against Marketo in our final pairing.

MarketingMadnessAnnounce-Elite8

The Round of 8 tips off on Monday March 28th.  Each match up will be decided by a Twitter poll that will run for 24 hours from tip off.  The team with the most votes will advance to the next round. Make sure you follow the matchups on Twitter and place your vote for the marketing tool that you cannot live without!  You can also follow #MarketingMadness on Twitter to stay up to date with all of the tournament action.

Follow RLM on Twitter and #MarketingMadness to stay up to date on all the tournament action.

The Madness Marches On! 

RLM Marketing Madness 2016

We are excited to host the 2016 RLM Marketing Madness Tournament.  The tournament will be an epic battle for bragging rights among the top digital marketing tools available today.  The Tournament Selection Committee has been hard at work reviewing the potential participants and determining the top 16 seeds. The teams have been seeded based on current number of Twitter followers.

The Sweet Sixteen:  Round 1 Matchups

RLM Marketing Madness Tournament Bracket

We have some powerhouse programs in the field and some rising upstarts looking to deliver some big upsets. The first round sees several cross-discipline matchups, such as the intriguing #2/#3 battle of social analytics power Simply Measured vs SEO-focused SEMrush.  Looking ahead, there are also some very interesting potential second round matchups, such as possible head-to-head battles with social superstars HootSuite and Sprout Social as well as the chance for a Hubspot/Marketo marketing automation showdown!

The Round of 16 tips off on Wednesday March 23rd.  Each match up will be decided by a Twitter poll that will run for 24 hours from tip off.  The team with the most votes will advance to the next round. Make sure you follow the matchups on Twitter and place your vote for the marketing tool that you cannot live without!

All matchups will be decided on Twitter via a 24-Hour Twitter Poll.

ROUND 1 SCHEDULE

1 @Hootsuite  vs  4 @BuzzSumo – Tipoff Approximately 9:00am ET, Wed. March 23

2 @SproutSocial  vs 3 @Canva – Tipoff Approximately 9:30am ET, Wed. March 23

 

1 @Moz  vs  4 @UserTesting – Tipoff Approximately 10:00am ET, Wed. March 23

2 @SimplyMeasured  vs 3 @SEMrush – Tipoff Approximately 10:30am ET, Wed March 23

 

1 @GoogleAnalytics  vs  4 @ScreamingFrog – Tipoff Approximately 11:00am ET, Wed. March 23

2 @MailChimp  vs 3 @CrazyEgg – Tipoff Approximately 11:30am ET, Wed March 23

 

1 @Hubspot  vs  4 @Optimizely – Tipoff Approximately 1:00pm ET, Wed. March 23

2 @KissMetrics  vs 3 @Marketo – Tipoff Approximately 1:30pm ET, Wed March 23

 

This page will be updated with tournament results as they unfold.  Stay Tuned!

Follow RLM to stay up to date on all the tournament action.

Let the Madness begin!!!

#MarketingMadness

The Nerf War Rages On

Strategy. Execution. Results.

The battle horn blows. The thunderous clap of a hundred geldings tears through the morning air. The techies approach, weapons in hand, following their gallant leader, Lord Javier: Warden of the North and Defender of the Motherboard.

It is time. The Nerf Wars are upon us.

Red Letter Marketing Creating a Strategy for Nerf War

First, we strategize. Marcy, who’s appropriately the lead project manager at RLM, charts our defenses and assigns positions according to stealth and weaponry.

Tell Stealth To Mind the Monitors - Red Letter Marketing Nerf War

Daniel the Stealth watches the monitors to cue entry into the building. (Maybe he’s checking his email. It looks like he’s checking his email.)

Now we execute.

We flank and shift, fire and storm. Within the first few minutes we have a clear upper hand.

Red Letter Marketing Executing their Nerf War Strategy

Garrett holds the high ground, carefully picking off the techies one by one.

Now the results.

Red Letter Marketing won the Nerf War vs. Dynamic Quest

See here the defeated CEO, Lord Javier, conceding defeat with a smile.

There Is No Other Way To Come - Red Letter Marketing is Victorious in their Nerf War Invasion

Olaf stands victorious near the former front lines, having unloaded enough foam to shame Fed Ex.

That’s our style no matter what we do: Strategy. Execution. Results. (And a little fun thrown in for good measure.)