Thoughts on design, branding, and creativity:
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Visuals, Schmisuals — Here’s What Your Business Really Needs to Pop
There’s been a lot of talk about the importance of the visual lately, especially for social media sharing and online marketing. Heck, I’ve been one of the leading protagonists! But what seems to be missing is that this means more than just slapping up an image and calling it a day — it takes a bit more to get attention for your business and create influence.
In fact, with all the visual noise now, you are probably already feeling that something more is needed to have any hope of making a dent in today’s noisy digital ecosystem.
So what will make the difference for your business?
A unique voice
It starts here — differentiating yourself from what others are doing so you alone stand apart. This, of course, begins with your product/service offerings and lies at the foundation of your business strategy — but then it also needs to carry through how you present yourself everywhere your business is seen: your website, your social media pages, email marketing, blog posts, e-books, newsletters, business cards, mailers, posters,... Read More
12 Ways That Good Design May Elude You
Good design is present even when you might not be aware of it. This may be counterintuitive to what most people think, because design is not about decoration and just making things look pretty. There is that too, but design runs through our lives in everything we see and do. When you go for a drive, do your shopping, watch TV, grab a magazine, visit a website, use a bottle opener… you get the picture — design is there.
The best design supports whatever it is we are trying to do, creating seamless, annoyance-free experiences. Good design aids and enhances experiences, never detracts from them. Good design is about function in all of its forms.
Indeed, the most noticeable design is usually bad design — those all-too-common occurrences when you made a wrong turn because of bad signage, pinched your finger using a cumbersome tool, or searched in vain for something on a website when time was short. You certainly noticed the design then! And it sucked.
Here are twelve things good design does by staying out of the way:
1.... Read More
Create Unique Content and Own Your Business Niche
Sharing other people’s content on social media is nice, but the best content sharers are content creators. Makers. Producers. Originators.
It’s one thing to cover that ’80s band on stage with a bad wig at the local fair — it’s a completely different thing to perform a song you’ve written and then share it with the rest of the world for the first time. If it’s good, people will snap to attention. If it’s not so good, well… people may head to the side area for a corn dog, but if it’s really, really good? You could soon find yourself on a much larger stage with a vastly larger audience.
Whether it’s a great song, a witty visual, an interesting article, a compelling video, or an innovative dance routine — making something new that only you could have made captures the imagination and sets you apart from the rest. Heck — being original is what moves the ball forward on the field of human civilization.
Rise above the noise
As social media continues to evolve — and as all media continues to evolve... Read More
[INFOGRAPHIC] 12 Reasons Your Business Needs to Get Visual
Cheap, Freebie “Design” Tools Are Not Really About Design At All
They’re slick. They’re cheap. Their sales pitches look convincing. And there are some very well-respected people promoting their services. But they have absolutely none of the virtues of what REAL design brings to business.
Dragged and dropped, templated, clip-arted, cheapo do-it-yourself “design” tools do not really produce design at all — at least not the type of design that can truly transform your business and take it to new heights. They are Trojan horses — fakes, frauds — cake decorating applied to something that should really be taken a lot more seriously: your business.
Now, that’s not to say that there isn’t a place for what those tools have to offer — there is. But only within the larger context of a professionally planned, strategic design and branding program. They can be helpful in extending an established brand and design strategy, for day-to-day activities such as creating images for a blog or to share online.
But too many people seem to be playing around... Read More
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