Lucy Nguyen

Beginner Guide On How To Use The Gradient Tool In Adobe Illustrator CC

1. Create a shape.

2. Click the Gradient Tool in the Tool Bar.

3. Then hover over the shape and click on it once.

4. Then open the gradient panel from Windows > Gradient.

5. You can add a gradient to either the shape or stroke. We’ll focus on shape here. There are three types of gradient you can at the top of the panel. Liner, Radial, and then freeform. You can also change the angle below.

6. In the gradient bar, you can see circles of colour. Here you can change the colours by double-clicking the circles.

7. You can add more colours by clicking on the bottom line of the gradient. The mouse should change and another circle will appear. To remove a colour click on the circle and then click the trashcan icon at the side.

Hope that helps! Happy Creating.

6 Marketing Tactics/Ideas To Increase Job Applications

Finding talent is tough! Here’s are 5 ideas to help increase job applications.

1. Job Alerts

Many organizations offer forms where potential applicants can sign up to get an email alert when a job is posted. Some even have granular details for department, location, type etc. I’ve personally used them in my job search, and it helps spread the word quicker. Some organizations can set up these types of alerts, or you can do it manually via a monthly newsletter.

2. Social Media

It’s a great way to let a wider audience know about job openings! Post it in a story or post frequently. I’ve seen some of the higher traffic and shares come from these types of posts.


3. Video

A video speaks volumes and allows a truly rich experience. You can show branding, value, who your company is and established yourself in the applicants’ minds.

You can see an example at https://www.sap.com/canada/about/careers.html and https://www.apple.com/careers/ca/

4. Career Webpage

If an applicant lands on your company career page, they aren’t just looking for jobs. They want to learn more about your company in depth.

Check out these webpages: https://www.samsung.com/ca/about-us/careers/ & https://shakepay.com/careers

They give the benefits, what the company is about, their values, etc.


5. Niche Tradeshows/Expos/Fairs

Currently, right now, tradeshows are virtual. They are still a great way to find new talent and spread the word. The common ones are university fairs, career fairs, etc. However, you should think outside the box and go to industry or specific community shows. For example, Defcon is a widely known annual gathering for those in the IT industry. From hacking, programmers, social engineers, etc. There are often job booths set up there. Go where your target audience is!


6. Targeted sponsorship on Associations

Job boards are of course the tried and true ways to get applicants. Some associations have their job boards, email newsletters to spread about job opportunities or take sponsorships where you can place ads on their website. Professionals often keep themselves accredited and drive traffic to these associations. An example is RGD, check out theirs https://www.rgd.ca/find-a-designer/jobs/index

Hope that helps!

5 resources for non-designers

In today’s world, it’s easy to design beautiful and professional assets easily. There are many resources, both free and paid that are a godsend. Here are my top 5 recommendations for resources to use for non-designers.

Canva

Freemium

The number one resource in my opinion. They are a ton of ree options along premium ones. You do not need to download any design program likes Adobe. You can edit right in the platform, and it has a low learning curve. I highly recommend this resource to start with to learn and play around with.  You can do almost anything from graphics to videos. 

Pricing starts at: Free -> Pro (149.99 CAD) -> Enterprise (Custom pricing) for the year

Envato Elements

Paid Subscription

You will need a design program like adobe to use the templates, but by far they are one of my favorite paid resource. They have so many different types of assets you could use. From Music to even 3D! That blew my mind. The pricing is reasonable, their UI is amazing (Filtering!) and I love the quality.


Pricing starts at Team (129 CAD) -> Enterprise (Custom pricing) for the year 

 

Adobe Stock

Paid

You will need adobe programs to use this resource. This is pricest by far, but they do have unique assets that can be only found on Adobe Stock. They also split their resources in interesting ways. They also offer a couple of freebies if you have an adobe creative subscription. So take advantage!

Pricing starts at: 10 Assets (38.99 CAD) -> 40 Assets (104.99 CAD) -> 750 Assets (261.99 CAD) for the year. Or you can get credits from 5 – 150 ranging from 65.99 to 1600 CAD.

Vecteezy

Freemium

They have a ton of vectors and photos in their library that I don’t see anywhere else. They have a ton of free ones alongside their premium ones. 

Pricing starts at:  Unlimited downloads (109 ) for the year -> Monthly subscriptin at  (14) each month

FreePik

Freemium

They have a good amount of free assets of vectors, photos and psd. Very paired down but they have a vast library. You will need Adobe programs to use their resources. 

Pricing starts at: Free -> Monthly Premium (10.49 USD) -> Yearly Premium (83.99 USD)

See my other recommendations of applications and programs here.

5 Webinar Ideas

Webinars have seen an explosion over the past decade. Webinars have benefited the audience by providing useful information and topics for them. While for organizations webinars they drive traffic, leads, and established thought leadership. We are all familiar with the standard format. A featured speaker will talk at length about or topic, usually with a host or by themselves.

I absolutely love them, but from time to time you want to spice it up. Here are five webinar ideas to try.

Q&A

Can’t think of a topic? Solicit it from your future audience and followers. Let them tell you what they want to learn about. If you are an expert or know an expert, the best thing they love is answering questions about their industry or specialty. As a bonus is you can get future content too.

Trivia

Make it fun! You can do two in one. Trivia is huge. From bar trivia to Jeopardy. People love to flex their knowledge. Run a Trivia, where you have your audience compete for the correct answer. After each question go in a bit in-depth about that specific question. Kahoot is a great resource to run your Webinar-Trivia hybrid.

Google Autocomplete interview

Take a well known idea and put your own twist on it. I’m sure some of you have seen the Google Autocomplete interviews. You can do one for your industry or speciality. You can make into a standalone video or into a webinar where you interact with the audience and go in depth. Google already knows what people want, so give it them! See below for an example.

Reacting to Movies and TV Shows

If you are lucky to be in an industry where Hollywood has made movies or TV shows about you can do reaction or breakdown. It’s fascinating to see what Hollywood gets right and wrong about our favorites. Like before this can be standalone or made into a reaction and webinar hybrid. See the video below for a example.

Debate or Reaching a Middle Ground

Who doesn’t like to see a good debate. If there is a controversy you want to explore with your audience. You can have two experts duke it out on their side, and get input from the audience in form of questions or to deliver the final verdict on who was right/convincing. It will be hard to pull off, but it is certainly worth the try if you have the moxie.

5 Unique Marketing Tactics For Manufacturers

There are many tried and true tactics and tools that we all know, but it’s sometimes difficult to know all the marketing tactics that exist out there. Here are five unique marketing tactics that you may not have heard of before for manufacturers. Channel Incentive Programs

Channel Incentive Programs

70% of sales are indirect (McBain, 2019). A lot of manufacturers reply on channel sales, and channel incentive programs are an application to help manage, disburse incentives, train and educate and more. It does depend on the vendor. Why I advocate for implementing a channel incentive program, is because it’s a way to create a branded channel sales rep program. It gives that extra edge for a sales rep to sell your product over anyone else.

Major examples are

  • HP’s Blue Carpet – Link
  • HPE’s Engage & Grow – Link
  • Microsoft – Link
  • Etc

A vendor I recommend is ChannelAssist https://www.channelassist.com/. They created the award-winning HP Gem club program.

Host your own awards

Winning awards is difficult on your own, so why not create one yourself? Become an advocate for your industry’s best and celebrate them. Many companies created yearly awards that have become a staple. It helps create backlinks, generates good PR, and increases your perceived expertise.

An example is CSSBI’s Annual photography award, the RedDot Award, etc.

Get featured on Podcasts

We are in the golden age of Podcasts. Studies have shown people are listening to them more than ever! They listen on their drive, doing chores, shower etc. There is a podcast for everything. Look into getting featured on some. Even if you can’t find industry-specific ones, you can find adjacent podcasts such as sales, marketing, and more! It’s a fun way to market your product if the podcasts allow it, you generate good PR and backlinks. A win-win.

If you can’t get featured, look into being a sponsor, it’s definitely a booming marketing tactic. Blue apron anyone?

Webinars

Similar to podcasts, this is a way to generate content and get backlinks. Find interesting people in your industry and interview them! Usually, you would focus on one topic and explore it. The difference between podcasts, is you have a live audience who can chime in and ask questions. This gives an opportunity to engage and learn. It’s also fun!

ROI or Assesement Tools

This one requires a lot of work, but it is well worth it. Especially, if your product its complex. We are all familiar with them as consumers, such as insurance quotes, calculators, personality quizzes, etc. The goal is to tell the prospect what they are missing out, or need. Which is of course revenue, and your product.

Examples are of amazing tools are:

Hope these ideas helped and never stop experimenting!

How to Create a Webinar Landing Page in HubSpot

To create a simple registraton webinar landing page, I suggest going to HubSpot’s Market Place. Where you can download themes, modules, and templates for the landing page without having to create one from scratch. They range from many different price points.

I perfer the Drive | Drag-And-Drop Website Theme – Lite Version by Drive Web Studio. You can use whichever you want, and download it to your asset downloads/library.

Once it finishes downloading you can access them by selecting the market place icon in the top left corner and then choose “Marketplace downloads”.

Click create a page from the list.

Of course, create a form and start inputting the visuals and details.

I also recommend downloading the Countdown Time Module. It gives a sense of urgency to your prospects.

Hope that helps and as always happy creating!

Types of Content Ideas for Business

Creating content is always a huge undertaking. Here’s are some ideas to help!

Blog Posts

  • Awards
  • Company news
  • Employee Spotlights
  • Explainers
  • History
  • Ideas
  • Top benefits of X
  • Top Lists (Podcasts, products, etc)
  • Types of X
  • Year in review

Videos

  • Ads
  • Employee Spotlight
  • Explainers
  • Facility
  • Interviews
  • Short Videos
  • Webinars Clips

Social Media

  • Answer FAQ
  • Bite-Size Video Clips/Gifs
  • Company accomplishments
  • Company culture
  • Company milestones
  • Contests
  • Correct a common misconception that relates to your industry
  • Cross-promote our social media platforms
  • Curated Content
  • Event/Tradeshow Promotion
  • How-to videos
  • Image Scrabble Guess what this image is
  • Industry News
  • Inspiration Quotes? (Motivational Monday) for contractors
  • Links to free resources
  • Live Video (Instagram)
  • Newsletter and product knowledge
  • On this day in History
  • Product/Company Videos
  • Promote your partners
  • Question Posts/Polls
  • Quick Tips and Plans
  • Recommended Podcasts
  • Reference pop culture / topical items
  • Share infographics
  • Share something funny
  • Share statistics
  • Thank customers for their support

Infographics

  • Generational impacts or vice versa
  • How-to tutorials
  • Pain points and solution
  • Types of X
  • X amount of benefits

Happy creating!

How To Create Numbered Tickets InDesign: Method 2

This method uses the numbered List in Adobe Indesign. See method 1 here. Let’s get to it!

Step 1

Designed your Ticket and then create a text box where your number will be. PUT A SPACE in the text box. Otherwise, this method will not work.

Step 2

Go to Type > Bulleted & Numbered Lists > Define Lists…

Step 3

Clicked “New…” It will then open to give you some options. Name your list, and click all the options. “Continued Numbers across Stories” & “Continue Numbers from Previous Document in Book”.

Step 4

Make sure you click the text tool and click into where your numbers are supposed to be.

Step 5

Click into the top control panel, or go to the Window > Control, to get it to show up. Make sure you are in the Paragraph section, and then ON YOUR KEYBOARD CLICK ALT + THE LIST SYMBOL AT THE TOP. (See circled items below).

Step 6

It will then open up into the “Bullets and Numbering” panel.

Choose:

  • List Type: Numbers
  • List: The list you defined earlier
  • Format: Choose whatever format you want
  • Mode: Continue from Previous Number…

Check the preview to make sure it works, and then click OK.

Step 7

You can see that it now shows the first number! You can remove the period by changing in the Bullets and Numbering Panel “Number:” It currently says ^#.^t. Just take out the period.

Step 8

Copy/Duplicate the elements onto the page as desired. InDesign will automatically count them for you.

Step 9

You can create more on pages, just by right-clicking and either click “Duplicate” or “Insert Pages”.

See more tickets yay!

Hope that helps! Happy creating!

MSP Business School – Enabling Sales Success by Driving Action (Guest Feature)

I had a great time at MSP Business School. In episode 68, Paul Schroeder and I share excellent suggestions on incentivizing your sales team to increase revenue and how ChannelAssist Inc helps companies create these programs.

Listen at the Website or Listen Below!


Follow MSP Business School Podcast at:

A podcast geared to Technology Service Providers where we bring you strategies and tactics to grow your business and build a winning culture. I love their podcast and the dynamic between the hosts is great!

Follow the Hosts at their LinkedIn:

Additional Resources at:

How To Create Numbered Tickets InDesign: Method 1

This is a simple method that I’ve used before and is doable if you have a printer vendor. See method 2 here also!

Before you start make sure you have facing pages turned off.

Step 1

Create a single ticket design on Master Page. Keep the same design on both pages.

Step 2

Create a text box where you want the number to be

Step 3

Go to Type > Insert Special Character > Markers > Current Page Number

Step 4

Get out of master view to normal view. Then add as many pages as you would like either in the document set up or in plus + sign in the bottom right corner of the pages panel.

And tada you should have the numbers on the tickets!

Note: If you would like to change the way the numbers appear go to Layout > Number & Sections Options. Then change the Style under Page Numbering.