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WiM - Join us at WiM! Sponsorship Announcement
Client Spotlight
WiM - Join us at WiM! Sponsorship Announcement
By Kathy Steele

We are thrilled to announce our sponsorship in the Women in Manufacturing 11th Annual Summit. This year's theme, Manufacturing HERoes is close to our hearts as we have the pleasure of working closely with incredible female leaders and men across the industry sector.

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WiM - Join us at WiM! Sponsorship Announcement

We are thrilled to announce our sponsorship in the Women in Manufacturing 11th Annual Summit. This year's theme, Manufacturing HERoes is close to our hearts as we have the pleasure of working closely with incredible female leaders and men across the industry sector. …

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Customer Experience Goes Digital for this Client
Client Spotlight
Customer Experience Goes Digital for this Client
By Kathy Steele

Bales Metal Surface Solutions, a leading provider of metal coatings and finishes, worked with us to launch the next generation of its website. It features new digital tools designed to help improve their customer's and prospect's buying experience.

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Customer Experience Goes Digital for this Client

Bales Metal Surface Solutions, a leading provider of metal coatings and finishes, worked with us to launch the next generation of its website. It features new digital tools designed to help improve their customer's and prospect's buying experience.…

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Sales Effectiveness: How Does Your Company Rate?
Sales Enablement
Sales Effectiveness: How Does Your Company Rate?
By Kathy Steele

Optimizing sales should be an ever-present, number one priority for all organizations. How do you test and validate your sales process? You need to understand the complexity and potential holes in your revenue generation system.

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Going Above and “Beyond Business Friendly” to Bring New Businesses to Elk Grove Village
Client Spotlight
Going Above and “Beyond Business Friendly” to Bring New Businesses to Elk Grove Village
By Christiana Henry

Beyond Business Friendly is more than just a catchy tagline. It embodies the Elk Grove Village government's mission and vision as they strive to be known as the most business-friendly community in America. Elk Grove Village is home to the largest industrial park in the United States with over 3,800 businesses and more than 400 manufacturers.

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Can You Set Your Pricing Based on the Value You Bring to Customers?
Growth Mindset
Can You Set Your Pricing Based on the Value You Bring to Customers?
By Kathy Steele

What are your products and services worth to customers? How do you compare to their next best option? Can you prove it? If you're unable to answer these questions, you are not alone. Surprisingly, very few businesses can articulate and substantiate their value.

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Customer Spotlight: Updating Your Digital Front Door
Client Spotlight
Customer Spotlight: Updating Your Digital Front Door
By Lisa Behning

It’s often said that your company’s website presence is the “digital front door” to your company, and that front door can leave quite the impression. Did you know that 88% of online consumers will not return to a website following a bad experience?

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Customer Spotlight: Updating Your Digital Front Door

It’s often said that your company’s website presence is the “digital front door” to your company, and that front door can leave quite the impression. Did you know that 88% of online consumers will not return to a website following a bad experience?…

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Customer Experience Starts with Employee Experience
Growth Mindset
Customer Experience Starts with Employee Experience
By Kathy Steele

Our guest, Diane S Hopkins, author of Unleashing The Chief Moments Officers, shared the methodology she uses to help organizations transform their customer experiences in our May webinar. In her Exceptional Experience Strategy Map, an organization needs to move their culture from thinking about customer experience as an "initiative" to an internal "instinct" that anticipates customer's needs and has the skillsets to exceed the expected consistently.

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Customer Experience Starts with Employee Experience

Our guest, Diane S Hopkins, author of Unleashing The Chief Moments Officers, shared the methodology she uses to help organizations transform their customer experiences in our May webinar. In her Exceptional Experience Strategy Map, an organization needs to move their culture from thinking about customer experience as an "initiative" to an internal "instinct" that anticipates customer's needs and has the skillsets to exceed the expected consistently.…

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The Growth Method - Building A Growth Mindset In Your Organization
Growth Mindset
The Growth Method - Building A Growth Mindset In Your Organization
By Kathy Steele

In our webinar with Women and Manufacturing (WiM), we explored the concept of how an employee can advance their career as part of organizational growth initiatives or innovation investment. Our three panelists shared their career journeys and how they took on projects both inside and outside of their companies to develop new skill sets or build expertise. The Center for Creative Leadership's research studies on executive growth and development confirmed that experience is the best teacher. In these studies, they found that various leadership challenges contribute to a managers' becoming experienced. But learning was not automatic. It was possible to have the knowledge but miss the meaning.

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The Growth Method - Building A Growth Mindset In Your Organization

In our webinar with Women and Manufacturing (WiM), we explored the concept of how an employee can advance their career as part of organizational growth initiatives or innovation investment. Our three panelists shared their career journeys and how they took on projects both inside and outside of their companies to develop new skill sets or build expertise. The Center for Creative Leadership's research studies on executive growth and development confirmed that experience is the best teacher. In these studies, they found that various leadership challenges contribute to a managers' becoming experienced. But learning was not automatic. It was possible to have the knowledge but miss the meaning. …

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Small Business Owners Rise Through Difficult Times With Alternative Learning
Brand Awareness
Small Business Owners Rise Through Difficult Times With Alternative Learning
By Christiana Henry

Next Level Northwest has helped a number of small- to mid-size businesses in northwest Chicagoland create jobs, expand facilities and grow revenue through entrepreneurial education.

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Turning Uncertainty Into Off-The-Charts Customer Satisfaction
Client Spotlight
Turning Uncertainty Into Off-The-Charts Customer Satisfaction
By Kathy Steele

A net promoter score measures customer experience and helps predict business growth. It can be a challenging obstacle to overcome. The consultancy who created it, Bain & Company, sets the bar even higher for B2B companies—anything less than 60 percent is considered a red flag. That's why it was pretty big news for Bales, a metal surface solution company, to learn that their NPS has gone up four points from 2019 to 77 percent and maintained the high level throughout the pandemic. The average NPS score in manufacturing is a meager 53 percent—but why does all of that matter at all? Because companies with a high NPS score tend to grow four to eight percentage points above their market's annual growth.

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Turning Uncertainty Into Off-The-Charts Customer Satisfaction

A net promoter score measures customer experience and helps predict business growth. It can be a challenging obstacle to overcome. The consultancy who created it, Bain & Company, sets the bar even higher for B2B companies—anything less than 60 percent is considered a red flag. That's why it was pretty big news for Bales, a metal surface solution company, to learn that their NPS has gone up four points from 2019 to 77 percent and maintained the high level throughout the pandemic. The average NPS score in manufacturing is a meager 53 percent—but why does all of that matter at all? Because companies with a high NPS score tend to grow four to eight percentage points above their market's annual growth.…

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In the Mighty-Mid Market, the Future Looks Bright
Growth Mindset
In the Mighty-Mid Market, the Future Looks Bright
By Kathy Steele

There are nearly 200,000 middle-market businesses representing one-third of the U.S. economy. While definitions of this group vary, the National Center for the Middle Market categorizes it as businesses with top-line revenue between 10 Million and 1 Billion. These companies are private and public, family-owned, geographically diverse, employ approximately 48 million people and span across all industries.

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In the Mighty-Mid Market, the Future Looks Bright

There are nearly 200,000 middle-market businesses representing one-third of the U.S. economy. While definitions of this group vary, the National Center for the Middle Market categorizes it as businesses with top-line revenue between 10 Million and 1 Billion. These companies are private and public, family-owned, geographically diverse, employ approximately 48 million people and span across all industries.…

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Client Spotlight - 100-Year-Old Forging Company Grows over 20% in 2020
Client Spotlight
Client Spotlight - 100-Year-Old Forging Company Grows over 20% in 2020
By Kathy Steele

Anchor Harvey has been featured in the industry news and podcasts quite a bit in recent months and with good reason. This 100-year-old aluminum forging company has faced down what could have been a disastrous year due to the pandemic.

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2021 - A Look Forward From Our CEO
Growth Mindset
2021 - A Look Forward From Our CEO
By Kathy Steele

It's hard not to get excited about something new - a fresh start, a birth, a new year. 2020 is over, so how can we take the lessons we learned and use them to our advantage this year?Our first

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2021 - A Look Forward From Our CEO

It's hard not to get excited about something new - a fresh start, a birth, a new year. 2020 is over, so how can we take the lessons we learned and use them to our advantage this year?Our first…

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Beyond the Tagline: Living a Brand Promise and Making an Impact
Brand Awareness
Beyond the Tagline: Living a Brand Promise and Making an Impact
By Kathy Steele

The unique and powerful story of Elk Grove Village and its commitment to being Beyond Business Friendly is well-known on a local, regional, and even global level.

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Capitalizing On Positive News - Promoting Capabilities During COVID-19
Client Spotlight
Capitalizing On Positive News - Promoting Capabilities During COVID-19
By Lisa Behning

During the COVID-19 pandemic, having test kits available became a critical need so that mass testing could become a reality. With more tests, our country could begin to lift shelter-in-place directives so that businesses could resume and life return to a new “normal.”

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“The Customer Is King”, Especially in a Pandemic.
“The Customer Is King”, Especially in a Pandemic.
By Amy Anderson

We all remember the adage that it costs five times more to acquire a new customer than retain a current customer. The coronavirus pandemic has put an even greater emphasis on client retention given spending is at an all-time low. Customers are the lifeblood of your company. The following are three ways to support client retention and keep revenue flowing.

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“The Customer Is King”, Especially in a Pandemic.

We all remember the adage that it costs five times more to acquire a new customer than retain a current customer. The coronavirus pandemic has put an even greater emphasis on client retention given spending is at an all-time low. Customers are the lifeblood of your company. The following are three ways to support client retention and keep revenue flowing.…

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Will Your Business Hit A Growth Ceiling?
Will Your Business Hit A Growth Ceiling?
By Janet Viane

Growth is the biggest challenge in any business, regardless of industry, with or without a global pandemic. In a world where external forces are impacting business success like never before, conventional wisdom and experience can no longer guide growth strategies.

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Will Your Business Hit A Growth Ceiling?

Growth is the biggest challenge in any business, regardless of industry, with or without a global pandemic. In a world where external forces are impacting business success like never before, conventional wisdom and experience can no longer guide growth strategies.…

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Client Spotlight - Municipality Takes Proactive Approach to Supporting Businesses During Pandemic
Client Spotlight
Client Spotlight - Municipality Takes Proactive Approach to Supporting Businesses During Pandemic
By rc

Red Caffeine worked with the Elk Grove Village economic development team and a steering committee of business leaders to launch a new website that helps local businesses respond to and recover during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

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Fighting COVID-19: Manufacturer supports increased number of tests
Fighting COVID-19: Manufacturer supports increased number of tests
By Lisa Behning

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses have had to adapt and change more rapidly than ever before. Adjusting to staff working remotely, dealing with social distancing protocols, and keeping employees safe and healthy against an invisible threat has kept many businesses spinning to adjust to this new normal.

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Fighting COVID-19: Manufacturer supports increased number of tests

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses have had to adapt and change more rapidly than ever before. Adjusting to staff working remotely, dealing with social distancing protocols, and keeping employees safe and healthy against an invisible threat has kept many businesses spinning to adjust to this new normal.…

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Client Spotlight - GiGi's Playhouse
Brand Awareness
Client Spotlight - GiGi's Playhouse
By Janet Viane

GiGi’s Playhouse, headquartered in Hoffman Estates, IL, is the only Down Syndrome Achievement Center dedicated to offering free educational, therapeutic and career-based programming for individuals with Down syndrome.

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Client Spotlight - GiGi's Playhouse

GiGi’s Playhouse, headquartered in Hoffman Estates, IL, is the only Down Syndrome Achievement Center dedicated to offering free educational, therapeutic and career-based programming for individuals with Down syndrome.…

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Business as "Un" usual - Thoughts for Business Leaders
Brand Awareness
Business as "Un" usual - Thoughts for Business Leaders
By Kathy Steele

As business leaders, we face many challenges. Still, the recent international health crisis is unprecedented even for those who have weathered other setbacks like recessions, business divorces, or losing significant customers. At first, it seemed like it would be business as usual, but it's not. Over the past few weeks, our company has gone from flex work to entirely remote.

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Business as "Un" usual - Thoughts for Business Leaders

As business leaders, we face many challenges. Still, the recent international health crisis is unprecedented even for those who have weathered other setbacks like recessions, business divorces, or losing significant customers. At first, it seemed like it would be business as usual, but it's not. Over the past few weeks, our company has gone from flex work to entirely remote.…

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A unique "GRAD" school for entrepreneurs
Culture Club
A unique "GRAD" school for entrepreneurs
By Kathy Steele

Where do the business runners of today find ongoing learning options that help them scale their business? Traditional degree programs provide an incredible advantage for aspiring founders, but what about the many people who found a company post-college or need support once past the initial start-up phase?

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A unique "GRAD" school for entrepreneurs

Where do the business runners of today find ongoing learning options that help them scale their business? Traditional degree programs provide an incredible advantage for aspiring founders, but what about the many people who found a company post-college or need support once past the initial start-up phase?…

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Working with the best
Working with the best
By Parker Lee

The Red Caffeine team has the pleasure of working with Bales Metal Surface Solutions and Specialty Manufacturing, Inc. on a daily basis.

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Working with the best

The Red Caffeine team has the pleasure of working with Bales Metal Surface Solutions and Specialty Manufacturing, Inc. on a daily basis.…

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Funding Your Employer Brand Plan—A Numbers Game You Need to Win
Employer Branding
Funding Your Employer Brand Plan—A Numbers Game You Need to Win
By Kathy Steele

With unemployment continuing to trend under 4%, and companies' focus on employee recruitment and retention as we all fight in the war for talent, savvy leaders are starting to invest in employer brand strategies as part of their growth plan and competitive advantage.

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Time Is Money
Employer Branding
Time Is Money
By Heather Carbray

Teaching employees to think and act like owners is a concept pioneered by Jack Stack in his turn-around of SRC Holdings in the 80s that inspired both a book and an open-book business methodology that is now known as The Great Game of Business (GGOB).

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Time Is Money

Teaching employees to think and act like owners is a concept pioneered by Jack Stack in his turn-around of SRC Holdings in the 80s that inspired both a book and an open-book business methodology that is now known as The Great Game of Business (GGOB).…

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We've raised the bar!
We've raised the bar!
By Kathy Steele

We continue to raise the bar high for ourselves to ensure that we never stop growing. Each and every day we enhance our processes, add to our service offerings, grow our talent pool, and drink even more caffeine.

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We've raised the bar!

We continue to raise the bar high for ourselves to ensure that we never stop growing. Each and every day we enhance our processes, add to our service offerings, grow our talent pool, and drink even more caffeine.…

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A competitive edge in municipal marketing: Planning for strategic growth
Brand Awareness
A competitive edge in municipal marketing: Planning for strategic growth
By rc

Complex municipalities often have well-defined goals. What sets some in the public sector apart is the ability to think and operate in terms of business objectives -- to understand the "why" behind their actions and communicate that to internal and external stakeholders.

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What is lost talent costing you?
Employer Branding
What is lost talent costing you?
By Heather Carbray

With the unemployment rate being at a record low, finding and retaining top talent is critical. A number of things are affected by a vacant position, and many business owners may be surprised at the cost. The war for talent is in full force, so how can companies prepare themselves for battle?

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What is lost talent costing you?

With the unemployment rate being at a record low, finding and retaining top talent is critical. A number of things are affected by a vacant position, and many business owners may be surprised at the cost. The war for talent is in full force, so how can companies prepare themselves for battle?…

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Is your business failing to scale? You need a GROW-TO-MARKET™ plan
Growth Mindset
Is your business failing to scale? You need a GROW-TO-MARKET™ plan
By Kathy Steele

No matter the size or industry, most companies need customers, employees, and processes to achieve growth goals. Learn how a Grow-to-Market plan could help your team scale strategically.

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Five tips to create a winning employer brand
Employer Branding
Five tips to create a winning employer brand
By Kathy Steele

Today’s competitive talent market requires businesses to up their game to become and stay an employer of choice.

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Why social media is essential for your B2B sales and marketing strategy
Why social media is essential for your B2B sales and marketing strategy
By rc

No matter the industry, social media can play an integral role in your sales and marketing strategy.

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Employer Branding for Manufacturers: How to Get Started
Employer Branding
Employer Branding for Manufacturers: How to Get Started
By rc

Building a powerful employer brand doesn’t have to be a scary thing. The key is to define your employer brand from the inside out.

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Aligning Sales and Marketing Part 3: The Musical Number
Sales Enablement
Aligning Sales and Marketing Part 3: The Musical Number
By rc

The final part in our Aligning Sales and Marketing series. What's the last step?

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Aligning Sales and Marketing Part 2: The Part Where You Help Me Help You
Sales Enablement
Aligning Sales and Marketing Part 2: The Part Where You Help Me Help You
By rc

When aligning sales and marketing, regular conversation is the critical (but attainable) first step. The second step is where you help me help you.

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We made the list!
We made the list!
By Kathy Steele

Our efforts of fueling meaningful impact for our clients and ourselves have led us to 112% growth, and we have no plans of stopping.

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We made the list!

Our efforts of fueling meaningful impact for our clients and ourselves have led us to 112% growth, and we have no plans of stopping.…

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Aligning Sales and Marketing Part 1: The Easy Part
Sales Enablement
Aligning Sales and Marketing Part 1: The Easy Part
By rc

Aligning the sales and marketing teams is a common pain point in any industry. Gain insight into the tools, processes, and best practices that'll help align your teams.

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BRAND AWARENESS STARTS WITH YOUR TEAM
Brand Awareness
BRAND AWARENESS STARTS WITH YOUR TEAM
By rc

If you rebrand your company the right way, it’s not just reflected in the visuals. Launch your new brand internally to your team first to ensure that your employees are energized, entangled in the brand and enthusiastic about what was happening with the company.

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BRAND AWARENESS STARTS WITH YOUR TEAM

If you rebrand your company the right way, it’s not just reflected in the visuals. Launch your new brand internally to your team first to ensure that your employees are energized, entangled in the brand and enthusiastic about what was happening with the company.…

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3 Reasons You Should Define Your Exceptional Client Experience
Sales Enablement
3 Reasons You Should Define Your Exceptional Client Experience
By Amy Anderson

An Exceptional Client Experience (ECE) leads to client retention, growth, and advocacy. Clearly layout and define your ECE to speak to the areas your clients can feel most value from your relationship.

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Employees: Your Company's Most Powerful Social Advocates
Employees: Your Company's Most Powerful Social Advocates
By rc

Are your employees your biggest advocates? They should be! Learn how we encourage our team to engage with our company on social media and how their engagement affects brand awareness and employer branding.

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5 Tips To Promote Your Business Through Digital Marketing
5 Tips To Promote Your Business Through Digital Marketing
By rc

Ready to realize a meaningful ROI from your online presence? Here are 5 tips to help you focus on building and maintaining a successful and efficient digital marketing strategy.

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RC - The best and brightest
RC Spotlight
RC - The best and brightest
By Kathy Steele

This marks the third consecutive year that we have been awarded for our innovative and thoughtful culture. At Red Caffeine, we live and breathe our core values, which further align with the qualifications to be considered a winner.

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RC - The best and brightest

This marks the third consecutive year that we have been awarded for our innovative and thoughtful culture. At Red Caffeine, we live and breathe our core values, which further align with the qualifications to be considered a winner.…

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Use video marketing to win the attention of your customers and clients
Brand Awareness
Use video marketing to win the attention of your customers and clients
By rc

With so much content saturating the internet, it's hard to find a way to stand out and reach your audience. To keep up, use video marketing to win the attention of your customers and clients.

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Does your sales team have the tools they need to close the deal?
Sales Enablement
Does your sales team have the tools they need to close the deal?
By rc

Follow these five steps to find out if your sales team has the right tools they need to close the deal.

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Aligning Sales and Marketing: Introduction to a Three-Part Series
Sales Enablement
Aligning Sales and Marketing: Introduction to a Three-Part Series
By rc

In a perfect world, the hard work your marketing team is producing should relate back to your sales and annual revenue. But, we all know this is no walk in the park. Learn how to align your sales and marketing teams in this 3-part series.

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Work shouldn't suck. RC wins best places to work 2017
RC Spotlight
Work shouldn't suck. RC wins best places to work 2017
By Kathy Steele

Best Places to Work in Illinois is a research organization that conducts in-depth employee surveys to determine how people really feel about their workplaces.

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What Every Business Should Know
Growth Mindset
What Every Business Should Know
By rc

Do you really know why your prospects and customers buy? Many companies assume that they have their finger on their customers' pulse because they have been in an industry for five, ten, or even fifty years. But this usually is not the case.

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What Every Business Should Know

Do you really know why your prospects and customers buy? Many companies assume that they have their finger on their customers' pulse because they have been in an industry for five, ten, or even fifty years. But this usually is not the case.…

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Red Caffeine True Hollywood Brand Story
Red Caffeine True Hollywood Brand Story
By Kathy Steele

Starting up or starting over is an exciting but nerve-racking time. In November 2013, we launched Red Caffeine, our new business, which I jokingly refer to as a ten-year-old start up. Among the top priorities for the start up of any business is launching your new or renewed brand into the marketplace. In our case, we were starting over and there were both positive and negative emotions tied to moving away from our old brand. We were certainly concerned about how much brand equity would be lost with the change, but ultimately, we were real

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Red Caffeine True Hollywood Brand Story

Starting up or starting over is an exciting but nerve-racking time. In November 2013, we launched Red Caffeine, our new business, which I jokingly refer to as a ten-year-old start up. Among the top priorities for the start up of any business is launching your new or renewed brand into the marketplace. In our case, we were starting over and there were both positive and negative emotions tied to moving away from our old brand. We were certainly concerned about how much brand equity would be lost with the change, but ultimately, we were real…

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Your Growth Goals Are Unrealistic Unless You Create A Company Growth Engine
Growth Mindset
Your Growth Goals Are Unrealistic Unless You Create A Company Growth Engine
By Kathy Steele

What’s the one thing you could do to ensure your company is sustainable? The answer is to create a growth engine for your business, of course. Many organizations neglect to invest in creating a predictable and measurable strategy to accelerate and manage growth. Six key areas can help companies sustain a growth engine.

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What's In Your 'Stack?' It's Not Just MarTech Driving Business Today
Digital Transformation
What's In Your 'Stack?' It's Not Just MarTech Driving Business Today
By Kathy Steele

The good news is with the increased ease of integrating platforms, Accounting, human resources and ERP software could be connected to your marketing software. At the very least, marketers and business leaders should be aware of the technology systems outside of MarTech and consider what data and processes could aid their business growth strategy.

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What's In Your 'Stack?' It's Not Just MarTech Driving Business Today

The good news is with the increased ease of integrating platforms, Accounting, human resources and ERP software could be connected to your marketing software. At the very least, marketers and business leaders should be aware of the technology systems outside of MarTech and consider what data and processes could aid their business growth strategy.…

Read this article

Wake Up! How to Create a More Engaged Workplace Culture
Employer Branding
Wake Up! How to Create a More Engaged Workplace Culture
By Kathy Steele

Investing in your company culture will pay off with a lower turnover rate and a more productive staff in the long run. Wake up! Create a more engaged workplace.

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