Sunday, April 23, 2023

Throwing it back with Birthday Retro Daisies!

 One of my favourite new Qualatex 18" Microfoil™ Balloons is the Birthday Retro Daisies.

Daisies were a popular floral motif in the 1960s and 70s. This flowers simple, cheerful appearance and association with innocence and purity made it a favourite among the hippie counterculture of the era. Today, daisies are still used in retro-inspired designs as a nod to the past, but they can also be incorporated in more modern designs for a fresh and playful touch.

This week, I enjoyed creating a design using this new balloon to make an air-filled arrangement that would be perfect for a delivery. It is bright, fun and relatively easy to make once you learn how to make the flowers (see video below)

In this design there are two types of twisted flowers: the larger flowers were made using 350Q balloons and the smaller flowers were made using 160Q balloons, and there is one 260Q flower (pink) in the design.





Although I did not use all of these techniques to make my flowers, you may find it helpful when recreating this design... you can add your own creative flair to it! 

How to Create Balloon Daisies 3 Ways!


To make this design, I started with a wooden centrepiece stand from Gibs On It.



I covered the base using a stretched 16" white balloon. I pre-stretch the balloon first, then cut off the neck and make a small hole at the top of the balloon. It is a little tricky to stretch it over, but with a little care it is possible to get it to cover the base.


I also covered the pole, this time with with a pre-stretched 350Q. I slipped that over the pole and secured it at the base using a scrap 160Q balloon.


Finding reliable bases and poles for designs such as this is not always easy. You could always use a PremiumConwin Deco Stick and Cup glued to a tile base, though it will not be as stable as this wooden pole and base. 

Once my base was prepared it was time to start to creating!

To support the 18" foil balloon, I used an odd sized balloon cluster, keeping the balloons on one side smaller than the other side.



I then added the 18" foil to the base of the design.




As my design was designed around the Retro Daisies balloon, I sat down and created a range of twisted flowers using the same colours that are on the foil to create unity and a sense of oneness in my design.

Birthday Retro Daisies Design by Sue Bowler
www.suebowler.com 

I secured the twisted daisy in Caribbean Blue to the wooden pole, and the remaining flowers have been secured to the design using UGlu Dashes. This type of glue dot is extremely strong and easy to apply - Uglu Dashes are available at many balloon wholesalers and suppliers! 

So now to get the perfect and most appealing shot of my design! One of my latest challenges is to to improve my photography skills. Taking that perfect shot is not my strong point, and I definitely know that sharing an appealing photograph on socials is extremely important!

I don't have a photo backdrop in my studio so I rely on tools such as CANVA to help me to make my photo a little more appealing! I also recently attended a free "How to Use Your iPhone Camera" course at my local Apple Store, which was super helpful, and was made even better because I was the only person who had signed up to the course that day so I got one-to-one tuition!

Here are a few of the photographs that I captured, which one do you think would be the most appealing for social media?

Do you think that a coloured boarder helps to bring more colour to the shot?

How about no background at all?

I introduced an Arch frame to give my design a stronger background 

And finally, I have cropped right into the photo, this brings the design closer and is a little bit more dramatic! 


I love taking the time to be creative! It is an opportunity to play around and truly enjoying doing what you love best... having fun with balloons! 

I always look forward to seeing what you create, especially with the new Qualatex balloons! 

Happy Ballooning! 

Sue
Follow me @suebowler





Monday, April 17, 2023

How to Create the Best Instagram Posts for your Balloon Business

There is little doubt that a strong Instagram post for your balloon business can help to attract new customers and engage your current followers. Here are some tips for creating a great Instagram post:

Use high-quality images:


For every post, you should always use high-quality, visually appealing images of your balloon decor to showcase your work. Make sure the lighting is good, and the images are clear and sharp.


Design by Karla Bell-Marsh of Blooms and Balloons Portsmouth 


Use engaging captions

Write captions that are informative, interesting, and relevant to the image. Use a conversational tone and try to include a call-to-action, such as "book now" or "click the link in our bio for more information."


Here are some tips for constructing effective captions:

  1. Know your audience: Understanding your target audience is crucial to creating captions that resonate with them. Consider their interests, preferences, and values, then tailor your captions accordingly.

  2. Keep it short: Instagram captions have a limit of 2,200 characters, but shorter captions are often more effective. Keep your captions concise and to the point, using simple and direct language.

  3. Use a clear call-to-action: Including a clear call-to-action in your caption can encourage users to engage with your post, whether that is by liking, commenting, or sharing it.

  4. Tell a story: Captions can be an effective way to tell a story or provide context for the image or video. Use the caption to share insights, emotions, or experiences related to the content.

  5. Use emojis and hashtags: Emojis and hashtags can help to make your caption more visually appealing and increase its visibility. However, use them sparingly and ensure they are relevant to the content.

  6. Edit and proofread: Before posting, be sure to edit and proofread your caption for spelling and grammatical errors. A well-written caption can increase your credibility and make your content more engaging.



"Celebrating a whole year of love, laughter, and little moments that make life big! 🎈🥳🎂 #1stBirthday"

"Happy 1st birthday to the cutest little one in town! Let's celebrate with lots of balloons and fun! 🎈👶🎉 #FirstBirthday"

"One year down, a lifetime of adventure to go! 🎈🌟👶 #1stBirthday"


Highlight your unique selling points: 


Showcase what sets your balloon business apart from others. Whether it is your attention to detail, your custom designs, or your exceptional customer service, highlight these points in your posts.


  • Emphasise your attention to detail; Share photos of your intricate designs and highlight how you pay close attention to every detail to ensure your balloons look perfect.
  • Showcase your custom designs: Highlight how you work closely with your clients to create unique balloon designs that fit their specific needs and preferences. Share photos of some of the custom designs you have created in the past.
  • Highlight your exceptional customer service: Share testimonials from happy customers who have praised your outstanding customer service. Demonstrate how you go above and beyond to make sure your clients are satisfied with your services.
  • Share your expertise: If you have specialised knowledge in a certain area of balloon design, such as balloon arches or balloon sculptures, highlight this in your posts. Share tips and advice on how to create these designs, and position yourself as an expert in your field.
  • Offer promotions and discounts: If you are running a special promotion or offering a discount, make sure to highlight this in your posts. This can be a great way to attract new customers and set yourself apart from your competitors.

Use hashtags: 

Use relevant hashtags to increase the visibility of your posts. Research popular hashtags related to your business and include them in your post.


Here are some popular hashtags 1st Birthday balloon decor: #1stbirthdayballoons #1stbirthdayparty #1stbirthdaydecorations #firstbirthdayballoons #balloon1stbirthday #1stbirthdaycelebration #1stbirthdayideas #1stbirthdayinspiration #1stbirthdayfun #1stbirthdayballoonbouquet #1stbirthdayballoonarch #1stbirthdayballoondecor #1stbirthdaypartyideas #1stbirthdaydecor #1stbirthdaycenterpiece #1stbirthdaypartydecorations #1stbirthdaypartythemes #1stbirthdayballoonarrangements #1stbirthdayballoonart #1stbirthdaypartyplanning

Remember to choose hashtags that are relevant to your post and your audience, and avoid using too many hashtags that may cause your post to look like spam!


Encourage user-generated content: 


Encourage your followers to share their own photos of your balloon decor by tagging your business in their posts. Share these posts on your own page to showcase your happy customers and increase engagement.


Show your team: 


Share images of your team creating balloon decor or working at events. This helps to add a personal touch to your business and can help to build a connection with your followers.


Below is a collection of photographs from a corporate balloon job that I did some years ago. I have mixed prep work with an end result photo to create this collage!



By following these tips, you can create engaging Instagram posts that showcase your balloon business and attract new customers.

And finally, how often should a business post on Instagram?

The ideal frequency for a business to post on Instagram depends on various factors, including the type of business, its audience, and the content being shared. However, a general guideline for businesses is to post at least once per day, or a minimum of 3-4 times per week to maintain an active presence on the platform. That said, it is important to note that quality should always be prioritised over quantity. Posting too frequently or posting low-quality content can lead to decreased engagement and may even turn off followers. It's also important to consider the best time to post, as posting during peak hours when your target audience is most active on the platform can increase engagement and reach. You can use Instagram Insights to track your audience's activity and engagement and adjust your posting schedule accordingly. Ultimately, finding the right posting frequency for your business requires experimentation and analysis of your audience's behaviour and preferences.

I won't even pretend to understand algorithms, but I certainly try to create posts that will hopefully help to improve and increase engagement and visibility. Never be afraid to try out new things, and remember to check your account insights to help you to understand what works well and which posts are the most successful for you.

Happy Ballooning!

Sue
Follow me @suebowler




Tuesday, April 11, 2023

The Wonders of Balloon Arches for Event Design


Arches are a fantastic way to create a certain vibe or ambiance by drawing the eye and introducing colour to an event. They are particularly ideal for outdoor occasions such as sporting events, grand openings, and as indicators to signal where an event is taking place. Indoors, they are frequently used as entrance decor, intending to greet guests and setting the tone for the function. At themed parties, arches make a big splash and usually look great for backdrops and photo opportunities to create memorable moments.

Organic Style Balloon Arch by Anne McGovern, CBA of Elegant Balloons in  Pearl River, New York, USA.

Before beginning a balloon arch project, it is important to determine which style of arch to create. There are two main styles of arch when working with latex balloons: Classic and Organic. 

Classic Balloon Arch by Zoe Adam-Jones, CBA of JAZ Trading, Gold Coast. Australia

Classic Balloon Décor is typically the starting point for most decorators and balloon artists. Classic style balloon Arches are constructed using balloons that have been inflated and sized to a specific dimension These balloons are then added to an arch frame or line to create the arch. 
Classic balloon arches are a popular choice for corporate events due to their versatility and ability to suit a variety of themes and colour schemes. They are a cost-effective way to create a statement piece that are used to highlight an entrance, stage, or photo backdrop. Balloon Arches can be customised to match a company's branding and logo colours, creating a cohesive look and feel throughout the event. They are also a great way to add visual interest to a space without taking up too much floor space. Additionally, balloon arches are easy to set up and take down, making them a convenient option for event planners and organisers.

Fabulous Race Arches by Dave Saker, Balloon.co.uk


Organic décor embodies the beauty of nature through balloon styling. When different sizes of balloons are placed strategically throughout a design, an elegant and cohesive look is achieved, setting the mood for any event space.
It is important to note that organic décor isn't simply a matter of using a variety of different sized balloons. Rather, it requires intentional sizing and arrangement of balloons to create a natural flow while adhering to the principles and elements of design. This ensures that the design maintains rhythm, balance, and harmony. 
An organic balloon arch is the ideal decorative addition for weddings, birthdays, and other festive events. These arches are soft and whimsical in appearance, and they add a touch of charm to any setting. One thing is for sure, organic balloon arches create a stunning backdrop for photographs and are a popular choice for social media posts.

Organic Balloon Arch by Sarah Courtney, Belle Balloons, Melbourne, Australia

Typically, an Arch is freestanding, meaning it can be strategically placed for maximum impact. For a freestanding Arch, heavy base plates and an Arch form are necessary to secure the balloons, whether it's a Classic or Organic Arch.

A lot of balloon companies often design their own Arch frames utilising metal or plastic conduit, while the bases are made from materials like steel, concrete, or other dense substances. This process requires technical expertise to create an Arch that is user-friendly. For indoor Arches, lighter materials can be used, but safety must always be prioritised. Be mindful that in the event of an Arch collapsing and causing damage or injury, you are accountable for any harm it may have caused.

The Aeröpole system was specifically designed for the balloon professional to help them achieve the perfect Arch. The system is flexible, it will perform (move) outside in the same way a helium filled arch would,  and it is not ridged like an arch that is built on a conduit frame.

What Makes the AeroPole System Stand Out?
  • The AeroPole System uses lightweight, flexible poles made of composite fiberglass to create both outdoor and indoor Arches and Columns without the need for helium.
  • Different sizes can be achieved by adding or removing poles, which are so flexible that they bend dramatically in strong winds without breaking.
  • The AeroPole System is the only product that can achieve this level of performance in the market.
  • The base plates of the AeroPole System are 24" squared, weigh 28 pounds each, have raised feet, and a powder-coated finish that gives them a clean and professional look.
  • Each base plate has a center hole for the 6" steel pin to attach, and they are stackable for outdoor jobs on windy days.
  • The combination of the unique base plates and poles allows you to create various sizes and shapes of Arches and Columns ranging from 5' to 15' tall.
  • This system is quick and easy to set up, and is well worth the price. By using an AeroPole System to make a 35' arch, you can save on helium costs in just 2-3 uses.

Black & Gold Embellished Balloon Arch by Avital & Nir Shechter, CBA of Balonir, Israel.

White and Coloured Embellished Balloon Arch by
Avital & Nir Shechter, CBA of Balonir, Israel.

AS a final touch enhance the look and value of your arches by adding extra details.
Mastering the basic principles of creating arches is just the beginning. Elevate your arch designs to new heights by incorporating extra details. These additional features not only enhance the appearance of your arches but also increase their perceived value to potential customers.

If you are looking to design your own special balloon Arch, whether Classic or organic style, check out this fabulous design tool from Balloonpro.co

A must have for any balloon professional, this digital design tool gives you everything you need to create and calculate balloon décor, giving picture perfect digital renders to quote and market your next sale!

This awesome tool will help you to design: Organic Balloon Décor, Arches, Columns, Duplet Square Pack, Alternate Size Pack, Linking Walls, Volume Calculators, and so much more. 

You can test out this tool for 7 days FREE! https://balloonpro.co/


To conclude:

  • Balloon arches are a festive and fun way to add color and excitement to any event.
  • They are perfect for creating a photo backdrop or highlighting a special area of your event space.
  • Balloon arches can be customised to match your event theme or colour scheme.
  • They are great for creating a grand entrance, framing a stage or dance floor, or adding visual interest to a plain wall.
  • Balloon arches can be made in a variety of sizes and shapes, from simple single arches to more complex designs featuring multiple arches and layers.
  • They are a cost-effective way to add a big impact to your event decor.
  • Balloon arches are perfect for birthdays, weddings, baby showers, corporate events, and more.
Happy Ballooning! 

Sue
Follow me @suebowler