Think. Create. Design. WRL.

Front End Web Developer Internship

We have a paid internship position available if you have the experience and a hunger to train as a front end web developer. You’ll work with our web development team on creative and functional projects for a variety of clients. Knowledge and experience with the following would be ideal:

  • HTML, CSS
    • Bonus points if you have experience with CSS animations
    • Bonus points for SCSS/SASS or LESS
  • JavaScript, jQuery (Only basic knowledge required)
    • Bonus points if you have experience with JavaScript animations
  • Familiarity with WordPress, Drupal, Bootstrap
  • PHP (Only basic knowledge required)
  • Hunger to expand your knowledge and your skill set.

Additional skills and knowledge that would make you a better candidate:

  • Git (or other version control system) experience
  • Knowledge of SEO Best Practices and how to find and fix common issues
  • Familiarity with GSAP, SVG Animations, Google Analytics
  • Familiarity with Photoshop & Illustrator, or other image editing software

Please submit your resume and portfolio to Randal Pope at rpope@wrladv.com

Jacquie Mazziotta Honored with NSME Achievement in Excellence Award

The National Sales & Marketing Executives™ (NSME) of Akron/Canton recognized the 2017 winners of the Accent on Excellence™ awards on February 28 for demonstrating the highest levels of professionalism during their careers in sales and marketing. Our own Jacquie Mazziotta was one of the honorees for excelling in her current role of providing public relations and marketing communications strategy for several clients in the manufacturing, retail and commercial building industries at WRL Advertising.

Prior to her current role, Jacquie worked in education with several school district superintendents in Summit County as well as with educational leaders at the state level on messaging development and strategy.  A champion for public education, she served as communications director for Stow-Munroe Falls City School district where she was vital to the passage of a new $6 million levy as well as a $5 million renewal campaign. There, she spearheaded the implementation of social media combined with multi-faceted marketing strategies, leading communications efforts into the digital era.

The NSME Achievements in Excellence awards recognize the best practitioners in the sales and marketing profession. Winners are selected by NSME leaders, based on nominations from local professionals. Criteria include professional experience and demonstrated performance, as well as community and civic involvement.

Jacquie joined 26 other sales and marketing professionals being honored with the Achievements in Excellence™ award. (A complete list of winners is available at NSME Akron/Canton – Achievements-in-Excellence Recipients.)

David Baker, President and CEO of Pro Football Hall of Fame, was named 2017 Executive of the Year; Dan Flowers, President and CEO of the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank, was honored with the Outstanding Community Leader award; and Angela Garbicz, a graduating senior at The University of Akron, received the Jim Butler Collegiate Award.

 

Funny Business

I’ve been a fan of stand-up comedy for nearly as long as I’ve been in sales – over 20 years. Ever since I discovered Comedy Central in the late ‘90s, I’ve watched every comedy special and stand-up showcase possible and have gone to dozens of clubs to see comedians perform. But it wasn’t until recently when I tried doing stand-up myself that it dawned on me how much comedy and marketing have in common.

Throughout my sales career, business development has been an integral part of my job description, and it is where I have focused the majority of my efforts over the past several years. What drew me in that direction was the creativity of developing things such as the messaging for a print ad, a TV commercial or a radio script, and the connection that takes place between a marketing professional and a company.

My approach for my first open mic performance was similar to my approach when managing any marketing project for a new client.

Preparation: Identify strengths

Develop Content: Define message, tailor for audience

Delivery Method: How to best reach the audience

 

After watching the video of my first performance, it hit me like a lightning bolt. What I was doing was simply marketing the message that I had prepared, where my jokes were the product, the audience was my target consumer base and the laughter was my sale! I was able to see which jokes worked, which jokes didn’t work and what adjustments I needed to make on timing, delivery or content for my next performance to get more sales… I mean laughs!

Marketing is similar to stand-up comedy as well as other forms of art or entertainment. You put together ideas and concepts into a variety of formats to communicate your message to people you think will be interested. It’s a fun process when done with some creativity, courage and a sense of humor.

Graphic Designer

Job Description

WRL Advertising, a Canton, Ohio advertising agency, is looking to grow our design team with another talented graphic designer who is motivated, ambitious, resourceful and passionate about their work. Ideal candidates must have strong design, creativity and production skills, plus good people, organizational and administrative skills. The position will require periods of work on multiple accounts.

Graphic Designer Requirements (Education & Design):

  • Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design, Visual Communications or similar
  • 1-2 years of experience is preferred, but not necessary (a desire to learn and grow is the main requirement)
  • Strong design, creativity and production skills
  • Willingness to learn and understand that design “has a specific purpose”
  • Ability to create and design within established brand guidelines, and sometimes without established guidelines

Requirements (Software & Hardware):

  • Strong skills within Adobe Creative Suite (InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Acrobat, Bridge, etc.)
  • At least some comfort level in Microsoft Office (Word, PPT and Excel) and a willingness to learn how to utilize these tools
  • Mac and PC platforms are offered

Requirements (Personal, Administrative & Project Management):

  • Ability to work and communicate with teammates, suppliers and sometimes clients with a positive, professional attitude
  • Ability to work alone at times
  • Strong work ethic
  • Self-motivated and resourceful
  • Well-organized
  • Attentive to details (while learning to understand the big picture)
  • Strong ability to manage routine tasks and follow direction (assigned to you via your Inbox, in meetings or through other project management tools)
  • Must be willing to work extra hours occasionally to help meet deadlines (evenings and weekends)

Other Skills:

Other skills or interests you are passionate about are always encouraged and appreciated, but not required (including, but not limited to):

  • Copy writing and headline development
  • Web design
  • Illustration (info graphics, creative, graphical, photo, technical, etc.)
  • Video, animation, 3D modeling and rendering
  • Photography and photo retouching
  • Branding and Identity

Apply by emailing creative-jobs@wrladv.com. Please include resume and portfolio link.

No phone calls please.

Using Title Tags to Define Your Website

It’s probably safe to say anyone with a computer has “googled” something in search of a website for information. From finding a local restaurant’s phone number to determining a definition of a word, using search engines is quick and easy and quite frankly a big reason the world has gone digital. The words being searched or “googled” will present a list of options, which often consist of websites – sometimes ads – that reference the originally searched words. That’s where title tags are important. Title tags are keywords websites use to tell Google (or Yahoo or Bing) which websites to include in the search results.

In the below snippet, the terms “title tags” were “googled”, and this website – a great informative source on the subject – is an example of one of several sites that turned up in the list of options or search engine results.

 

How to choose good keywords?

All businesses want their websites to turn up at the top of search engine results because it’s how customers find websites and ultimately drive conversions. In order to make sure a company website is being “found” or is “searchable”, it is necessary to choose good keywords that define the site.

Each webpage should have a topic that can be summed up in two to four words, which can be used as the keywords. These few words are essential to a web page because they show a focused topic, which ultimately generates good search results. So when creating a title tag for a website, summarize the web page into a few descriptive keywords.

Identifying keywords and developing website content that makes a website searchable is an important function of what WRL’s SEO (Search Engine Optimization) specialists do. All SEO efforts are constantly in competition with other companies’ efforts to get higher recognition in search engine results. Thus, our marketing experts keep on top of Google Analytics to use it as a tool to efficiently measure your performance.

Title tags and keywords are the basics of SEO, and there are many more layers that get even more technical, so if it’s overwhelming, fear not, WRL can help find the optimal solution for you. For more information about keywords, title tags and SEO services, visit wrladv.com or call 330.493.8866.

Doing Good in a Community

Community involvement is incredibly important to the staff at WRL. While we don’t all reside in the city of Canton, many of us are also deeply involved with activities in our hometowns as well as other local areas in which we do business.

WRL Senior Art Director David Jensen is very involved in the town of Orrville. As a member of the Orrville Chamber of Commerce, he has worked with many of his clients for the betterment of their community attending networking events, annual dinners, etc. This also includes a comprehensive rebranding of the city to help showcase Orrville’s unique blend of geography, history, and personality to pave the way for future community development.

As chairman of the local YMCA Marketing, Membership and Programs committee, David is part of the group responsible for looking at current marketing strategies and how they can help drive new membership and programming within the Y. He aims to lead the cause, through these efforts as well as through valuable connections with many business and community leaders in Stark County, to keep it as a viable community resource for many years to come.

“I have been honored to be on each board and being part of an organization that I believe makes a difference in every community they are present,” said David. “It is an inclusive organization that offers more than a gym or a pool, but an opportunity to become part of all that is good in a community.”

How UX Design Improves Brand Value

Vector graphic shape biuild by muti icon to UX / User Experience / type symbol for your design.

User experience design (UX) is a relatively new web design discipline practiced in our industry. However, it’s based on decades of practice backed up with psychology and design research.

Simply put, visitors to your website must have a good interactive experience. According to Econsultancy, 88% of online consumers are less likely to return to a site after a bad experience. Margin Media reports 48% of users who viewed a website not working well on a mobile device as a sign that the business simply doesn’t care. This brings us to the question, ‘What constitutes a bad user experience?’ The answer – Not being able to find the information you’re looking for, non-functioning mobile design and poor quality visual design.

Websites must be beautifully designed, well organized and most importantly, easy to understand. Visitors need to like what they see and understand how to navigate.
Here are some UX tips to have in mind when evaluating your site:

Search
Do you have an easily visible and accessible search bar? Most Fortune 500 companies have a search bar on their homepages. This is an important element for sites that have several product pages. Additionally, search bars also help viewers find specific information featured on a company’s blog.

Response
Your site needs to be quick! Anyone who remembers dial-up can recall how slow the World Wide Web once was. And now, with DSL 4G and faster, people want speed. According to Smashing Magazine, a one-second load time has actually been shown to increase conversions. There are several important elements to consider including image size, optimized code, and fast and secure hosting. These are all paramount in order to ensure people take action when visiting your company’s site.

Test
You really like your site, but how about everyone else? A good indicator would be to test the site with a non-technical audience in order to really see how it will perform. Testing doesn’t have to be an ordeal.

“You can discover and correct most of your problems by allowing five or more users to provide you with feedback on the user-experience,” said WRL Front End Web Developer Randal Pope II.

You put a lot of effort into marketing and advertising efforts that drive people to your site. Make sure they’re having a great user experience while they’re there.

If you’re interested in WRL’s comprehensive web programming and design services, Contact Us and let us know how we can Think. Create. Design. for you.

WRL & Pathway Partner for the Giving [Tree] Season

giving-tree

This holiday season, WRL employees will give back to local children through the Pathway Caring for Children’s annual giving tree program. A giving tree – adorned with snowflake tags, each including a child’s name, age and a suggested gift – is on display in the WRL entrance. Members of the WRL team can choose a tag and provide a gift for a child based on his or her wishes.

WRL clients and community members are invited to join us in this gift giving effort. Those interested are encouraged to stop by our office and choose a name off the giving tree and donate a gift for a child. Gifts will be collected at WRL and delivered to Pathway where members of our team will help wrap. Pathway associates will then give the gifts to the children who not only appreciate the gift, but are often most grateful to know they are loved and thought of throughout the holiday season.

Pathway Caring for Children is a non-profit social service agency that provides foster care, adoption and mental health services to over 600 children and families in the northeast Ohio community each year.

Giving back to the community is important to our team. Here’s a look at what WRL staffers have planned this holiday season. James, Director of Motion Graphics, will volunteer with his children at the Stark County Humane Society and also donate new coats to an Akron family who lost all belongings in a fire. Jacquie, Public Relations Director, and her family are volunteering at St. John’s Food Pantry, and Nathan, SEO Specialist, volunteers at his church’s holiday festival. Joannie, Office Manager, and her family buy gifts to fill shoe boxes to send to children in third-world countries as part of her church’s initiative, and Steve, Senior Account Executive, and his family host a 5K race, the Frosty Frolic, that raises money for Hammer & Nails, a local ministry that assists disadvantaged Stark County homeowners with home and property repairs.

Why Not Tell Your Story with Infographics and Motion Graphics

By Jeff LeBeau

Show, don’t tell. We’ve all heard this famous phrase reiterated throughout our industry, and attempts at showing a client’s story can challenge even the best storytellers to ask themselves, “What have you really done to differentiate and go above and beyond to inform your audience?” Powerful tools to consider for your stand out communication solutions are infographics and motion graphics, crafted by WRL Advertising.

Infographics and motion graphics both convey complex ideas that defy easy, written descriptions by visualizing in universally recognized symbols. This approach utilizes the visual part of our brains to see patterns and make what would be dull or difficult in words, exciting and engaging visually.

Motion graphics are powerful communication tools, and through innovative strategy that appeals to the complex human intellect, WRL Advertising is certainly capturing attention.

Showing vs. telling through video has shown to be an extremely effective method that conveys a core message to consumers who choose what they see and what they retain. Motion graphics are an integral part of reaching today’s audiences and are among the most highly engaging forms of content. While our society has progressively developed shorter attention spans, video has consistently shown itself to be one of the most engaging forms of media, with people willing to watch on average of just over two minutes.

Infographics are great for delivering your core messaging. They use visual images, charts or graphics to seamlessness tell a story or to represent data. Infographics take advantage of something known as the Picture Superiority Effect – a phenomenon that demonstrates images are more likely to be remembered than words.

Both kinds of content, motion graphics and infographics, can form the cornerstone of an integrated campaign. Motion graphics raise search engine rankings for site pages and blogs, are the number one type of content uploaded to social media, and have been shown to increase email click-through rates by up to 13 percent. Infographics are just as at home in these channels and are equally effective in print.

WRL Advertising interactive media professionals have developed motion graphics for the healthcare industry, Fortune 500 companies, educational institutions and other organizations, which have used the medium to explain products and services as well as to train employees.

WRL’s Director of Motion Graphics, James Hill is ranked among the top 100 mixed media talents in the United Sates by AV Video Multimedia Producer Magazine.

If you’re interested in WRL’s comprehensive video services, check out our Motion Graphic and Infographic Portfolio or Contact Us and let us know how we can Think. Create. Design. for you.

WRL’s Medium for Media – Jacquie Mazziotta

Jacquie headshot

With the wave of strategic communications and social media options continuing to grow, and the ever-increasing need for creative, attention getting content, WRL Advertising is expanding public relations support to meet client demands. Recently, Jacquie Mazziotta joined WRL as public relations director for the agency and leads the PR department expanding media outreach, communication initiatives and promotion support for clients.

“It’s great to be at WRL and work with a dynamic and talented team of creative professionals. Our team brings a lot to the table in terms of experience, strategy and innovation,” she said.

Jacquie brings a breadth of experience to WRL. From working on local education initiatives to national retail and corporate client branding, she has worked in the fields of education, agency marketing and public relations and communications as well as freelance reporting.

Prior to her years in education, she worked with nonprofit organizations, a major national convenience store chain as well as in the travel and tourism markets. Perhaps her most notable accomplishment is her contributions on the Silver Anvil Award winning Ohio Bicentennial Campaign.

A published journalist, her work has appeared in Ohio School Boards Association Journal,  Chronicle of the Horse, an international equestrian magazine, Record Publishing’s Stow Magazine and Hudson Monthly, as well as Patch online news outlets and Lawn and Landscape Magazine.