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5 Must Knows BEFORE You Design A Website

5 Must Knows BEFORE You Design A Website | Design Revolution | Scoop.it

Team Curagami (http://www.Curagami.com ) has, over the course of our combined careers, helped thousands of clients build websites and about 99% have cart before the proverbial horse. "What is our design going to look like," they ask.

Most think "web design" is creating the look and feel of a site. Actually the look and feel, while important, is at least #6 on the "do these things to create a great web presence" list. Here are the first 5 things on that list:

1. Elevator Pitch - Who Are You?
If we were riding in an elevator could you explain your business before we reached your floor? If NO is your answer you are not alone and you need to go back to the drawing board and practice until you have your "elevator pitch" down. All things flow from that defining snippet.

Tags can help define your elevator pitch. Curagami.com Cool Tools For Ecommerce Merchants explains what we do in 5 words. Note that I don't have the the site yet so do as we are saying not as we do (always :).

2. Pain Point - Whose Your Tribe?
We create stuff to DO SOMETHING. Your product or service must help some tribe. Curagami helps ecommerce merchants understand content marketing because finding the balance beam between content that works and content that hurts is a CSF (Critical Success Factor) for ecommerce merchants. So our tribe begins with ecom merchants and we address the PAIN of understanding content marketing. We don't LIMIT ourselves. We don't say, "Go away" to B2B SaaS clients but they are cream on the top of our core tribe and mission.

3. UCA - What Are Your Customers' Aspirations
Unique Customer Aspirations is a metrics we developed as Marketing Director for Atlantic BT. UCA speaks to the transformation your content, product and service creates. Yes Curagami helps merchants make more money, but we also relieve the STRESS of not knowing what to do and why. We help merchants have confidence in their content. No one can build sustainable online community (everyone's master goal whether they know it or not) without being confident in their ability to create, share and curate content. Content is king online and the implications of that statement go far and wide. It's not enough to know your tribes shape you must know their CHARACTER too. Our tribe is STRESSED OVERWHELMED and WORRIED. Anything we do to relieve any of that makes our content sticky and sure to be shared.

4. Know Difference Between Content CREATION and CURATION
Being able to create content is important. We suggest our clients create about 10% of content from unique brand based strings. 90% of the content we want clients to share, discuss and riff off of comes from gurus, customers and THE OTHER. The other is anyone other than you and keeping tabs on your category information, knowing what matters most to your readers and why and understanding the need to tuck ego in back pocket and share competitive information is one of the hardest skills we teach. Web marketing is MOSTLY about THEM not YOU so knowing when you need to blog vs. when you need to comment is key.

5. Know Social Marketing Basics
I'm staying at The Blackwell Inn in Ohio while being treated at Ohio State's James Cancer Center. I've tweeted several positive comments @theBlackwell. Noneof those comments have been ReTweeted and they don't follow me.

ERROR.

My social following dwarfs theirs so breaking the FOLLOW BACK rule hurts 'em. By not picking up my @tweets they discourage such shares and lose the value of that communication (that they actually LISTEN and CARE). I think they do listen and care, but they don't have the skills to do so ONLINE. Before you create a website you need to know what's up in social media.

The Blackwell's lackof knowledge isn't fatal since they are located on Ohio State's campus and are the ONLY such hotel so located. They can SUCK at social media (for a bit) without pain. Doubtful your website, especially if it brand spanking new can afford such a deficit.

Since the master goal of your site is the creation of sustainable online community NOT understanding the implied contracts and un-stated ways social media works can be DEADLY.

Know those 5 things and we can begin to discuss wireframes, look and feel and visual marketing :). Marty

One More Thing - reason this stuff is so important, as my friend Frank Pollock would explain, is the web is a lie detecting amplifier. If you lie it will be shared with the world and known instantly or before, so don't lie. If you are CONFUSED, as many SMBs are, get STRAIGHT before you put crayon to paper and design a site or risk having your confusion being your main message.

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Time To Go Pageless? 8 Reasons Why Pageless Design is Future of Web Design

Time To Go Pageless? 8 Reasons Why Pageless Design is Future of Web Design | Design Revolution | Scoop.it

Pageless design frees websites from the outdated conventions of print design and fully utilizes the digital platform they’re built on. 

8 Compelling Reasons Why "Pageless' Web Design Wins (in the end):


* Tells a better story.

* Easier to "digest" or understand what to do.

* Emotionally more powerful.

* Higher Conversion Rates!!!
* Makes updating faster & easier.

* Lowers BOUNCE & encourages sharing.

* Looks great on all devices (mobile included).

* Lower cost to develop.

Marty Note
I confess to not being in love with the "infinite scroll" just yet. One modification we worked out for @Curagami, our Startup Factory funded startup, is to include a Call-To-Action at the top & Bottom.

CTAs help prepare the scroll. Remember "open book" tests? Putting a CTA on top of a waterfall of content helps prep a visitors mind. It "opens the book" for them. With this many impressive benefits I'm going to have to figure out how to start loving "pageless" design (lol).

I bet there are 5 (or so) similar modifications we can make to help us know how to create the paths and conversion we want by going "pageless".  

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Jakarta Web Developer's curator insight, July 9, 11:16 PM

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Drunk Tank Pink: The Power of Color in Marketing - Print Magazine

Drunk Tank Pink: The Power of Color in Marketing - Print Magazine | Design Revolution | Scoop.it
A review of the book Drunk Tank Pink, exploring the unseen power of color to persuade, market and influence consumer behavior.
Martin (Marty) Smith's insight:

Excellent article on color's hypnotic power over behavior, brand preference and life. 

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Branding: How It Works in a Social Media Age [INFOGRAPHIC]

Branding: How It Works in a Social Media Age [INFOGRAPHIC] | Design Revolution | Scoop.it
Branding and social media — they seem to go together so well, yet they're both widely misunderstood. While social media can serve as a gigantic megaphone for your brand, social ...
Martin (Marty) Smith's insight:

Worth taking another look at this excellent branding infographic.

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Jack Tang's comment, March 15, 2013 1:14 AM
Media and branding is always been mention together. The fastest to get your brand well known by everyone is though media channels like TV ads and internet. According to research, that TV ads advertisement has the biggest revenue in the industry
An, SungBin's comment, March 15, 2013 1:33 AM
because of these days internet immprovement, most of companies advertise there brand and products through internet like facebook and twitter. in article there are more facebook users than a twitter user in US. however, more people in twitter are saying only positive reactions to certain brand.
Kevin Chai's comment, March 15, 2013 3:17 AM
The article seems to be focused on a comparison between the effectiveness of marketing on Facebook or Twitter, with very little information regarding other sources of social media. Facebook is a decidedly more effective marketing tool than Twitter is, with their brand much more likely to spread there than on Twitter. However, Facebook is also a little bit more objective, due to how lenient females are on Twitter. While it does give a little bit of detail regarding how effective the two social media platforms are, much of these statements are something that we already knew and so this article does not contribute much to the understanding of branding.
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6 Reasons to Visualize Your Data in the Age of Distraction

6 Reasons to Visualize Your Data in the Age of Distraction | Design Revolution | Scoop.it

This piece was posted by Loren Sorenson for Hubspot, I selected it because as she says "If you aren’t prepared for the visual content revolution, you may be left in the dust.

 

Not convinced? Let's take a look at exactly how visual contentis positively contributing to marketing strategies -- it may just give you the push you need

 

"Learn why visual content is a critical part of your content creation strategy.

 

Here are some highlights:

 

**People remember only 20% of what they read

 

**83% of learning is visual

 

Condenses and Explains Large Amounts of Information

 

**Today, there is too much information on the Internet you have about 3 seconds to catch someone’s eyes so they'll consume your information.

 

Gives Your Brand an Identity

 

**Visual content draws people in, letting viewers better understand your brand's identity

 

Drives User Engagement

 

**If you've ever read a book with a child, you probably know they find pictures more interesting than words; but are adults really that different?

 

Selected by Jan Gordon covering "Content Curation, Social Business and Beyond"

 

Read full article here: [http://bit.ly/Ifujbp]


Via janlgordon
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janlgordon's comment, April 11, 2012 3:21 PM
Beth Kanter
Thank you for adding me to the wiki and for your kind words, it's greatly appreciated. Yes this is the conversation of the moment so to speak. I'm sure your presentation was amazing. Would love to hear it if you have a replay.
Beth Kanter's comment, April 11, 2012 10:08 PM
Jan: There's a link in the wiki to the live stream of the session - and a lot of notes and resources ... I love this topic! I'm holding myself back from created another scoop.it on it ...
janlgordon's comment, April 13, 2012 10:05 PM
Beth Kanter
Thanks for looking forward to seeing this info. Knowing you, I can imagine that you want to start another scoopit on this topic but it's not necessary because you're already doing a wonderful job covering it now.
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Should Our Web Designs Be Harder? Adding DEMANDS Back Into Our Web Designs

Should Our Web Designs Be Harder? Adding DEMANDS Back Into Our Web Designs | Design Revolution | Scoop.it

Making Demands Again & Designing Design In
At our Startup Factory funded startup Curagami we've been asking questions about how online communities are built and sustained. We are beginning to connect some important ideas from great thinkers:

Dan Ariely TED Talk on Meaning, Work and Motivation
http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_ariely_what_makes_us_feel_good_about_our_work

Trendwatching Report on "Demanding Brands"
http://trendwatching.com/trends/demandingbrands/

Daniel Pink's book Drive: Surprising Truth Behind What Motivates Us
http://www.danpink.com/books/drive


Content Marketing Triptych
http://sco.lt/4iT0xl

Web Design & "Work"

Yes, we now realize, you can make your website too easy. You can also make it too hard. Perceptions of "hard" and "easy" are highly relative judgements. An experts will find things easy the novice find very difficult.

SO one of the most important ideas for designing "work" into a website is finding a way to put people of similar levels of understanding in the same bus. We thinking of all visitors in 3 cohorts or tribes:

* Novice or new to whatever the site is sharing.
* Learning and so exposed to and thinking about the subject.

* Expert able to teach the Novice and Learning group.

At first we thought we should cluster members of each of these tribes into their own paths. All novices together, all learners together. After listening to Malcolm Gladwell and refining some of our testing conditions we realize such artificial selection harms rather than helps.

Community Is The Key
The key is creation of online community where peer to peer interaction is possible, supported, encouraged and rewarded. We, as website designers, can't combine our Lego blocks in as many variations as possible given the real creativity and engagement of our customers.

The ONLY thing we can do as web designers is clearly communicate OUR creation story, provide access to our Lego-blocks and CURATE the cool creations of our tribe.

The rub comes in at the "provide access to our Lego-blocks" web design stage. If your blocks encourage creativity and just the right amount of work your customers will want to SHOW YOU their creations as we learned from our friends at Haiku Deck.

Our interaction with Haiku Deck helped us create the Content Marketing Triptych:

* Tool that engages the BUILDER in us.
* Gallery where tool users share their creations (their work).
* Personal Profile (their content on your site).

The missing "magic box" for web designers is knowing WHO to ASK what. These ideas are "live ammunition" for ecommerce merchants. Too much work and you lose money. Too little and you lose the opportunity to win hearts and minds through just the right amount of work on top of the perfect contextually relevant ask.

What IS clear is finding ways to make demands and reward what our customers and advocates do with those demands is a CSF (Critical Success Factor) to winning web design. What are your experiences with building work back into your marketing?

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Google's Disparate Design Lesson - Agnes Martin Feature

Google's Disparate Design Lesson - Agnes Martin Feature | Design Revolution | Scoop.it

Google Features Work of Artist Agnes Martin
When I lived in Chicago the Milwaukee Art Museum was having an Agnes Martin exhibit. One Saturday I decided to drive the hour and a half to see the exhibition since I love the Milwaukee Art Museum (and this was before they got their amazing "cap")..

On the outside looking in you might think painting lines over and over again for most of your life would be boring to do and even more boring to view. You would be wrong on both sides of the equation.

Agnes Martin's work is a study in quiet power. Google's use of an Agnes Martin image today celebrating a great but hardly well known American artist teaches valuable design lessons including:

* Embrace the seemingly disparate.
* In a noisy world QUIET Design works.
* Simple and clean is the hardest design to do.
* Quiet repetition works too.
* Brand the unknown but beautiful.
* Share your brand authority with high quality but unknown memes.

If your designs can do any two of these six ideas you would be a hero and your company will WIN. Today Google did all six, but then they are GOOGLE :).

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Fonts & Colors Big Brands Use To Win Loyalty and Promote Engagement [Infographic]

Fonts & Colors Big Brands Use To Win Loyalty and Promote Engagement [Infographic] | Design Revolution | Scoop.it
Having trouble coming up with a logo? Our latest study highlights which combinations of fonts, colors and formats are used by the world's top brands.
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35 Rock Band Website Design Examples With 5 Conversion Problems

35 Rock Band Website Design Examples With 5 Conversion Problems | Design Revolution | Scoop.it

You can’t imagine your life nowadays without the internet. We all spend hours and hours doing various things, like work, research, entertainment.

Marty Note
Sometimes it is good to look at a group of websites. This link includes 35 examples of rock band websites. The convention is clear. Rock band staged photo looking out directly at the camera, lots of texture and dark colors in the designs. Here is how any one of these sites could increase conversion 3x or 4x:

* Lighten Up - all that dark texture and color lowers conversion.
* Calls To Actions - few CTA's (BUTTONS) hurt conversion.
* Scream Less - visitors are fans, so scream less convert more.

* FANS - where are the fans (testimonials, games, contests).

* Games & Mobile - scream to download the app.


Of these 35 designs Metallica and Incubus would convert the best. I understand branding must be done, but this much screaming branding is obsessive and damaging to conversion. Sometimes the best brand strategy is to make it easy for fans or supporters to JOIN and CONTRIBUTE.

Everyone of these band sites feels like a lecture NOT a conversation. Funny concerts aren't like this. Concerts are a give and take between the crowd's energy and the band's performance one contributing to the other. Web, at its best, works that way too but not here so much.

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