Tag Archives: Design

50 Scary Halloween Desktop Wallpapers

In keeping with today’s Halloween theme, here are 50 choices of desktop wallpapers you can save and use.  Small business tools

Excerpt:  Every Festival, I will compile some Wallpapers to Beautify our Desktop with the Wallpapers.

50 desktop wallpapers to click and use via 50 Scary Halloween Desktop Wallpapers.  From Design Skew

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Engagement Is the ROI on the Front End of Innovation

This article continues our efforts to better understand means and manage innovation.  There are good how-to within the content.  Recommended for all leadership and managment.

Excerpt:  People discover, too, that every enquiry—whether in the form of an innovation challenge or a World Café hosting or an immersion in design thinking—has two distinct phases: a front end phase and a back end phase.

Read full article via Engagement Is the ROI on the Front End of Innovation | Innovation Management.

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Content Marketing: McGladrey’s 4-Step Process Increases Content Production 300%, Web Traffic 100%

Recommended read for all small business.  The article includes great takeaway how-to in website content design and management for impressive results.   The example in the article is a tax and consulting firm but the tips and advice hold true for all businesses.

Excerpt:  SUMMARY: If the website is the center of the marketing universe, content is the cement that holds that foundation together, according to Eric Webb, Senior Director of Communications & Brand, McGladrey, a global assurance, tax and consulting firm.

This case study covers how McGladrey completely revamped its content marketing and website design, streamlining content production in the process. The company increased Web traffic, boosted its content production, and, in a less than three-month period, can now attribute $427,000 in business to its content marketing strategy.

Read full content via Content Marketing: McGladrey’s 4-step process increases content production 300%, Web traffic 100% | MarketingSherpa.

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Filed under Management, Marketing, Branding, Sales, Advertising, eCommerce & Social Media, Small Business, Website & Digital Media

Asking the Important Questions: A Guide to Design Thinking And a Better Way to Serve Customers

Great read  —  it references innovation but I think the advice and tips are important for everyday challenges not just innovation.  Recommended for all leadership and management

Excerpt:  Design thinking is a way of framing and then solving problems based on close and empathetic observation of users or customers. It’s a hot topic right now as companies seek new ways to make innovation happen, and to move beyond other problem-solving approaches such as those offered by Six Sigma. Design thinking forces people to think broadly about user needs and to be generative rather than purely analytical.

Read full article via Asking the Important Questions: A Guide to Design Thinking And a Better Way to Serve Customers | Innovation Management.

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Filed under Leadership, Operations & Innovation, Management

The Problem With Digital Design

Recommended read with great takeaways for all small businesses using digital design in product development.  Gains are offset by other losses and net value is not achieved.

Excerpt:  So, what’s the problem? There are potentially two. First, because the technology makes the work look complete at every step in the process, it can create a false sense of security. There can be a tendency to move on to the next stage in the process before teams have taken the time to deeply learn user needs, construct alternative solutions and vet both of these. In other words, the “fuzzy front end” of the design process may be cut short — to the company’s long-term disadvantage. This is, we believe, one of the major reasons product failure and success rates have changed little over the past several decades.4

Second, the very ease with which designs can be digitally drafted and prototyped might afford engineers the opportunity to “try it again and then, again and again.” In other words, the final design process can remain fluid longer than is useful. The ability to quickly iterate designs can lead to a spiraling effect, chewing up time and labor expense and effectively mitigating the benefits of digital design itself. Research has shown that these “virtual design rounds” can account for 75% of total project development costs,5 and they can delay project completion.

Read full article via The Problem With Digital Design. From MIT Sloan Management Review

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Email Marketing Essentials Best Practices Webcast

Looks like a good event for entrepreneurs and small business owners on August 23.  You are required to register for the webcast.

Excerpt: Meeting Description:
Whether you’re just getting started with email marketing, or are looking for some new ways to improve your response rates, this webinar is for you! In under an hour we’ll show you how to create an email that gets noticed and, more importantly, gets opened! Then we’ll show you how you can extend that email’s reach by using social media.

Learn about:
Creating great content and subject lines
The importance of colors, branding and design
Expanding your reach with social media
When to send and who to send to

You’ll also hear how one company increased sales and gained 1,400 fans by using Facebook and email marketing.

Read introduction and register here via . https://cc.readytalk.com/cc/s/showReg?udc=v0crawodjddl  From SCORE

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Paper Prototyping and 5 Analog Tools for Web and Mobile Designers

How-to with example tools to use for time savings.   Good tips from an expert.

Excerpt:  Designers love analog tools. No wonder. These tools lets us physically interact with interfaces and speed up the design process, like paper prototyping. What takes hours in the digital world can be sketched out in a matter of minutes.

That’s why analog methods of prototyping are especially valuable right at the beginning of projects – when speed matters the most. Working with paper, or perhaps a whiteboard, can accelerate the speed of our learning loops. Sketch, feedback, sketch, feedback, sketch feedback – you can go through dozens of iterations in one day and you’ll set solid foundations for the rest of the work. Consider it kind of premium insurance. Getting rough feedback quickly can save you a lot of work.

via Paper Prototyping and 5 Analog Tools for Web and Mobile Designers.  From Web Designer

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Useful Tools for Collaborative Web Design Work

More in tools today with great takeaways for small businesses DIY marketing and web design.

Excerpt: Recently, WebDesignLedger published a fantastic article that talked about the benefits of collaborative web design. It explained the beneftis of promoting teamwork, exposition of ideas, creation and expansion of knowledge, the mixture of different styles, meeting deadlines and multiple solutions to shared experiences.

Awwwards supports this collaborative culture in which we believe, and have prepared a list of interesting Web 2.0 tools that can be useful for teams working in web design.

Read full list an access tools via Useful Tools for Collaborative Web Design Work | Awwwards.

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Filed under Marketing, Branding, Sales, Advertising, eCommerce & Social Media, Small Business, Website & Digital Media

What Do The Best Website Pricing Pages Look Like?

Website design for pricing pages with comprehensive detail and how-to.  Don’t just copy someone else.  It would, no doubt, be at your loss to do so.

Excerpt … it can be easy to forget about one of your most important pages – the pricing page! It’s not just your pricing strategy that matters, but also the design of the page.

In this article I’ll go over some of the keys to a good pricing page. There’s not a one size fits all approach, so it’s important to test and see what works best for you.

Read full article via What Do The Best Website Pricing Pages Look Like?.  From KISSmetrics

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How Content Creators Benefit From The New SEO

A lot of comprehensive, well presented information and how-to in this article on the new SEO.  Recommended read.  Website design

Excerpt: Due to big changes in the SEO landscape, designers, photographers, videographers and writers have new opportunities to build their reputation, expand brand awareness and generate more leads. This post describes five important developments that content creators should be aware of, and then we’ll outline several ways to capitalize on them.

Read full article via How Content Creators Benefit From The New SEO | Smashing Magazine.

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20 Examples of Subtle Patterns and Textures in Web Design

Nice examples of website design and what you can do with a bit of thought.

 Excerpt:  When a designer accepts a web assignment, he will have to draft the overall web theme to match his client’s requirements. In order to support the perfect theme, he cannot even ignore one tiny link or object. In this compilation, we will first introduce 20 subtle patterns and textures that are here to ease the tremendous work burden.

Designing a website, do bear in mind that today’s people dislike to see any flat or solid color appearance. They make flat and uninteresting as an equation. Especially, if the website is for a modern and stylish company, this old fashion should be thrown away. That is why subtle patterns and textures are added in for extraordinary and vivacity

Read full article via 20 Examples of Subtle Patterns and Textures in Web Design.  From Web Design Booth

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9 User Experience Pitfalls That Repel Website Visitors

More great advice, tips and how-to from KISSmetrics.  CONTROL the things you can control as the ultimate first step in ensuring your website successes.  Marketing and website design

Excerpt: As a business owner, what can be worse than having a visitor leave your site due to an annoyance that you can control? You may lose sales due to numerous factors that are out of your control. But what about the ones that you can control? Wouldn’t it be great to have a nice, clean website so that you can focus on optimizing the things that matter?

In this blog post I’m going to share some things that send users away from your website – all of which you have the power to reverse!

Read full article via 9 User Experience Pitfalls That Repel Website Visitors.  From KISSmetrics

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Filed under Marketing, Branding, Sales, Advertising, eCommerce & Social Media, Website & Digital Media

30+ Really Useful Infographics Tools & Resources

Here is more help to design and build your small business infographic.  Join just about everyone in creating an infographic for marketing and branding or to send a message.

Excerpt: If you’re interested in developing your own infographics to reap these potential benefits, we put together this list of 30+ useful infographic tools and resources to help you on your way. We included a well-rounded mix of charts & graphs generators, graphics programs, mind-mapping tools, and resources for finding data sets and statistics.

Whether you’re just looking for simple online charting tools or seeking complex data visualization software, the list below has got you covered!

Check out list and links via 30+ Really Useful Infographics Tools & Resources.   From Web Ad.vantage

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Applying Dieter Ram’s Ten Principles to Web Design

Great detailed, comprehensive and exampled information on topic in all small businesses’ focus today – web design.  Covering what works, why it works and see how it works.

Excerpt: “Is my design good design?”  His answer to that question gave rise to his famous ten principles. His ethos is the mantra of modern designers:  Less and More. These principles were born in the realm of industrial engineering, but can equally be applied to web design.

Read full article via Applying Dieter Ram’s ten principles to web design | Webdesigner Depot.

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10 Steps To Designing An Amazing Infographic

Great how-to article on design your own infographic.  Comprehensive and detailed.  Marketing and more.

Excerpt: Information can be useful–and even beautiful–but only when it’s presented well. In an age of information overload, any guidance through the clutter comes as a welcome relief. That’s one reason for the recent popularity of information graphics. Infographics are visual designs that help to explain complicated data in a simple way (mental-health emergencies at Burning Man, anyone?). But how are they created? What can we learn from the designer’s process? And what does an infographic designer know about storks delivering babies?

Read full how-to via 10 Steps To Designing An Amazing Infographic | Co.Design: business + innovation + design.  From Co-Design via Fast Company

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