Newsletter July 2021 | Banter Group

Newsletter July 2021

By Valentina Borbone

With our ongoing growth, I’m delighted to have made two ๐Ÿ—๏ธ๐Ÿ—๏ธ appointments within Banter.

Many of you know Nicole Meehan, who started with me just 4 months into Banter’s journey as social media manager. Nic’s background in project management and working closely with clients on delivering social content and ongoing engagement positioned her perfectly for her recent promotion, โฌ†๏ธ to General Manager. I remember taking my own step from Account Director to GM in 2009 in my previous agency life and without sounding like a ๐Ÿ˜Š proud mother (but that’s exactly how I feel), I’m thrilled to offer Nic the same growth & development path. This new appointment allows Banter’s continuous evolution in delivering great marketing solutions and outcomes for our clients. Congratulations Nic, I’m very very proud of you.

Nic’s promotion, of course, led to the appointment of our new social media manager. Meet Amelia Goldie, an experienced writer and marketer, having worked with various brands across multiple industries. With over 54,000 followers of her own on Insta, she knows a thing or two about creating engaging content, embracing communities and delivering on objectives. It’s a bit of an extra bonus that Amelia also loves ๐Ÿ–ค The Cure, and you know, Robert Smith is my hall-pass ๐Ÿ˜‰, so #greatminds.

Together, we grow stronger as a business and as individuals and I hope you have the chance to get to know and applaud both Nic and Amelia in their new roles. ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

Valentina xxx

New team members

Things you need to know

Things you need to know

In-house Marketing Vs Agency: Which Is Right For You?

My ethos in transparency means I’ve recommended to clients that they don’t need Banter, they need an in-house marketer. It’s a big decision for many businesses with lots of consideration required. Yes, I know I might be driving a prospect of my own database to consider not using Banter. That’s ๐Ÿ‘Œ with me, if it’s the right decision for you.

I truly value the experience and knowledge of my team, and I also know they deliver great outcomes for our clients. In the changing landscape that we see with Covid and the impact on businesses, hiring-in is much, much more than just a headcount (think training, support, resources, technologies). Marketing tactics, digital behaviours and consumer sentiments change rapidly, and it’s my priority for Banter to stay ahead of all this to remain a viable business. We bring this to our clients with every engagement. For an in-house marketer, that’s a big ask on top of doing the daily job, filled with a wide range of skills, that’s forever growing.

In saying all of this, your business might be at the stage of growth that needs internal coordination to maintain momentum. If you have the right resource with the right skillsets, then an in-house marketer might be exactly what you need.

I’m sharing this article with you because I see more and more businesses struggling to deliver their core products, let alone the marketing to promote them. As business owners, we can’t wear all the hats ๐Ÿ‘’๐ŸŽฉ๐ŸŽ“๐Ÿงข. I don’t do numbers, I have Kristie as my accountant. I can’t manage 14 people and continue to deliver on client work, so I have a GM.

Please don’t burn out. Life is hard. Get help. Wear the right hats ๐Ÿ‘‘๐Ÿ˜œ.

Social media


Facebook reach

Facebook’s Organic Reach Continues To Decline

If you’ve noticed a sudden or dramatic ๐Ÿ“‰๐Ÿ‘Ž decline in your Facebook organic reach over the past month or more, you’re not alone.

The algorithm changes continue to impact what content is seen on feeds and in what priority order. If you’ve seen me present in the last 18 months, then you’re up to speed with the algorithm. If not, this comprehensive blog from Hootsuite will get you on the right path.

The good news: keep doing what we’ve been telling you – test and learn to see what works for your individual pages and audiences. Formats make a big difference – Facebook Live and uploading native videos of 5+ minutes* get the best reach and engagement, so long as you’re consistent (* that’s a broad report from Socialbakers, that might not be what you’re seeing work).

Facebook is also slowly rolling out the ‘New Pages Experience‘ (NPE) which you might have already experienced. There have been a number of bugs ๐Ÿ› and issues since release, so bear with the changes as they improve the overall look and functionality. There’s a lot you can do with the new layout so I encourage you to adopt it when it becomes available to you.

Banter boast


Banter boast

The Briars Inn

It’s a celebration for all things food this month on the Banter Boast.

In 2018, one of the most iconic historic bistros in our region was affected by a kitchen fire. Fast forward to 2021 and the Briars Inn, est 1845, came back with a fierce renovation and extension designed by the talented Tina Tziallas. As locals we drive past this venue daily, eagerly awaiting signs of life, and then we got that call: can you please rebuild our website for the grand re-opening. YES YES YES! This friendly-family, centrally-located, great-outdoor-area-for-kids bistro and a ๐Ÿฅ” potato bake to die for was back. To build a website that reflected the awesome design & decor, the new menus and a new adventure was thrilling. We love it. And we also loved the potato bake ๐Ÿ˜‹๐Ÿ˜‹.

Creating destinations for locals and visitors alike tickles our fancy big time. Get booking and support local.

Southern Highlands Food & Wine Festival 2021

Our beautiful Southern Highlands is synonymous with gorgeous ๐Ÿ„ paddock-to-plate food and wine ๐Ÿท and everything in-between. There’s a wonderful feeling that comes with having the chance to relaunch our region as a whole category of tourism to our neighbouring visitors. The Southern Highlands Food & Wine Association, representing the diverse growers, producers, farmers ๐Ÿง‘‍๐ŸŒพ, chefs๐Ÿง‘‍๐Ÿณ and venues, asked us to relaunch not only their Association’s digital presence (still in development), but their cornerstone event of the year – the Food & Wine Festival for 2021. After the devastating loss of produce due to smoke taint in 2019, followed by Covid lockdowns in 2020, this year’s festival is promising to be a celebration of all things cool-climate. We started with a new brand for the festival and delivered it through the stand-alone website. There’s still so much more to come. TICKETS for the OCTOBER EVENT are ON SALE NOW. Give your taste-buds a bath in what we locals get to experience often. You won’t regret it, and making a weekend away of it is truly the best way to really immerse yourself. ๐Ÿฅ‚๐Ÿฅ‚

Quick reads


Quick reads

The best 5 min reads for you

This section: Short reads, not just about marketing.
On the blog: I wanted to remind a few readers of the most popular question we are asked as an agency – “I built my website, why aren’t I on page 1 of Google“๐Ÿฅ‡๐Ÿฅ‡ . There are so many answers to that question and most of it relates to SEO practices, so check out the blog is you need a little refresher of all the things you can do to help your Google ranking.
Sticking to the theme of SEO, this short read from Yoast is a great rundown on blog post images – why use them and where to get them. A picture ๐Ÿ–ผ๏ธ is worth a thousand words – and whilst images certainly help readers relate to your content, it also aids Google Image Search ๐Ÿ”Ž and SEO practices to index your content in more ways, meaning you’re more likely to have your content discovered. If you’re ‘borrowing’ photos from the internet, don’t forget to adhere to copyright law or find yourself in hot water.
I’m so intrigued by container houses. The creativity of a metal box and the architects ๐Ÿ—๏ธ behind them are fascinating. This one in Spain caught my attention for its location and interiors, which only sent me down a rabbit hole to find this amazing resource – an entire gallery of designs. Enjoy.
Finally, there’s an update to the ‘save’ icon of the 1980s floppy disc. It’s always been a wonder for me why, as an industry, this wasn’t done a decade ago. We have emojis for all sorts of things and yet the ๐Ÿ’พ floppy disc represents a ‘save’. We seemingly bypassed the USB altogether, however, this evolving icon from Samsung is supposed to incorporate SD cards, downloading etc to embody all things that mean “save”.

Something cool

Something cool

The World’s Most Popular Websites World Map

You might think you know the world’s most popular websites, but wait until you see this incredible world map, ๐Ÿ—บ๏ธ showing exactly that.

Designer Martin Vargic visualises what the internet actually looks like using this Google-Maps-inspired aerial view. As our digital world grows at the rate of knots (we created 2.5 quintillion data bytes daily in 2020), visualising the internet is quite an effort, and one that I’d suggest is outdated the moment a graphic is completed.

You’d expect to see the GAFAS (Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple, Samsung) right? But this map isn’t about the world’s largest companies, it’s about their web presence and if websites don’t generate the highest volumes of traffic, they don’t make the top 5,000.

It’s a great opportunity to remind yourself not to live in your own geographical bubble of the Western World. A third of the world’s most visited 50 websites are based in China surpassing Amazon, Yahoo, and even Facebook in terms of traffic.

It’s a real WOW ๐Ÿ˜ฎ moment for me. Geeking out or not, it’s pretty fascinating.

Catch you next time ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

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Valentina Borbone

Valentina Borbone

Founder and CEO

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Valentina Borbone, Banter Group CEO, is a leading expert in the social media industry. She is an advisor for The International Social Media Association and runs training courses for small and large businesses. Want one of the best in the business on your side?