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Our team of writers brings you daily trend coverage, new products, inspiration, information and fun ideas. With an archive of more than 2,103 articles, you're sure to find something you love. Or if you have a great idea, let us know!

Signomatic - Everything your design business has been missing


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Designs can enrich our lives in many ways. They can be useful, practical, interactive or beautiful. Smart designs are those that are giving us the best of these four worlds.

 

Signomatic is a UK based company specialized in sign design and production. They combine dulce cum utili  in a very contemporary and creative way - they create what everyone needs, while delivering a very enjoyable interactive experience.

 

Whether you need a roll-up banner, door sign or a name tag, you will most certainly find that their Design Page has the dreamy kind of interface where you can easily turn your vision into reality.

 

They really have thought of everything - their website gives you an incredible amount of options for a full experience and your absolute satisfaction. Starting from choice of materials (wood, plastic, aluminium), though custom size and shape of your sign, and various possibilities when it comes to fonts and colors, Signomatic team convinced us that a happy customer is their number one goal.

 

Whether you are already a design entrepreneur, or you are just starting off your career, signs with your brand will certainly boost your credibility and make you look trustworthy and professional. There is as much to a good exposure and presentation, as there is in a good handshake with a new client. Also, by investing in your own custom made signs for your office and your name tags, you are showing that you care about details, which is of huge importance in this line of work.

 

Custom made name badges - you know you want one. With over 3,5 thousand customer reviews, Signomatic five star rate proves their expertise in printing or engraving everything you can possibly think of. Their large library of sign examples helps you boost your creativity and upgrade your idea. Your signs should stand for your brand and be designed with the right style, elegance and trust.

 

On top of delivering great quality, Signomatic also cares for the environment, by offering you eco options for your sign design. Are you ready to level up your business with a sign? Why not start now? Explore Signomatic website to discover what speaks to your brand best.

 

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Self-Education: Trends in Graphic Design for 2019


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Graphic designers spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about the meaning of things. They ponder why and how this info can be used to help others in a visual manner. Indeed, the art is involved in the graphic design but not in the way most people think. They say the art tries to reveal the world of an artist, but the graphic design tries to help others.

So, here is the list of trends in in the design for the next year. You might ask how we have worked it out. The PaperCheap team did a lot of research, compared and evaluated different international companies’ logo, images, websites, animations that took over the world and sparked an interest across the whole planet.

There are more than just seven graphic design trends for 2019. But these are the main ones to look out for.

Typography

The first major design trend we are going to see in 2019 is a creative typography. It is the use of text and fonts in different compositions. It became a key trend a few years ago but we are definitely going to see more leaps and bounds in the next year. There will be more dripping text, serif typefaces that have things missing out of it.

Nowadays everything bigger and bolder is better. So, designers are going to use artistic effects and bold type for the headlines of their designs. Typography is all about the text that stands out and captures attention. It can be combined almost with every design technique you can think of or by itself and still stand out.

Double Exposure

If you think about the last few years, I can almost guarantee that the word minimalism is popping into your mind somewhere along the line. But double exposure is the exact opposite.

There is a continuing trend of it. We will continue seeing a rise in the use of double exposure more and more in 2019. Designers are not only experimenting with its effects for fun artwork. It is used in advertising and other areas of design as well. There are a lot of step-by-step guides to make you a double exposure photo or poster in Adobe Photoshop. So, try it out and be in trend.

The Particle Backgrounds

With cryptocurrencies and their blockchain exploding in 2018 we have seen a massive trend come about 80% of all cryptocurrency websites featured the particle background. Particle animation is a great alternative to the standard hero sections on a web page. This kind of elegant cosmos-inspired theme works fine in combination with solid color illustration and vector drawings, as well as with photos. The great thing is that animation varies. You can create a bunch of dots that move chaotically or a constellation where you can connect circles with thin lines.

80’s Pastel Patterns

We are sure you heard of the bright and colorful hues of the 80s and the 90s. Well, it is gaining popularity once again. As we move away from ultra-flat design, you can expect to see more geometric patterns inspired by the era of our parents. The 60s rounded serif fonts never go out of style too. There are and there will be a lot of big chunky rounded serif in graphic design. It is definitely one of those things that has a retro feel but also in a way it feels new.

Color

Pantone 18-3838 ultraviolet is the color of the future year. It is used to convey meaningful, empowering and inspiring messages to people. Also, the use of watercolors is more prominent. Watercolor adds a level of hand-done painterly, emotionally an evocative way to create images that really offset the kind of type and stripe. Watercolor creates a very fluid juxtaposition between the type and the design elements and the illustration.

Cinema Graphic

In the graphics world, everything moves towards motion and away from the static design. Cinema graphics is an image with parts of the image that are video. It can be a fresh coffee and steam coming up off it or clouds that are moving around the top of the mountain. It definitely adds a cool element to the website. Whether it is through your blog post or a page background, it will definitely be in style for 2019.

Vintage Ultra-detailed

Everything old is new again. The vintage ultra-detailed graphics is a combination of many hand-drawn fonts, curvilinear elements, and block-printed compositions. This trend has been out there for quite some time but it certainly is not going away.

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Grids & layouts


Layouts are there to keep us organized, mark where the elements should go, and bring the whole design together to a structure which looks good to the eye. Besides easing your life, layouts and grids can be used to create a unique personal design style, something that will have you stand out and become instantly recognizable.

 

When setting up the margins, integrating modules into columns and deciding on the size of the gutter, most designers use a snap-to-grid tool, which helps to see if your object is lining up with other objects in the design.

 

 

When designing a layout grid, you can either listen to symmetry, or go for asymmetric design. Symmetric design is always centered and columns are the same size, while the margins are equal to each other, so this is usually a safe way to go. If you are going for asymmetric design, then there are also some rules of balance which should be followed.

 

In developing the composition of your design, you would want to pay attention to the Golden Ratio, as it has been the alpha and omega for aesthetics since we know it. Another rule, very useful for both column layout and landscape, is dividing your design into nine equal blocks with four lines that intersect. The main object of your design should be placed at these meeting points where the lines come together.

 

If you are designing a publication, another example where layouts come very useful is to use them to adapt your pages to the bound of the book/paper, so you can make sure that by bounding the pages you don't loose any details from your design.

 

 

Why are grids essential for visual communication is best shown on Instagram nowadays. Users have been creating different layouts for their entire profile. They have been telling stories row by row, sometimes also themed by colors, creating a rainbow effect on their profile page. They've also been publishing content to create columns of photos and texts.

 

Even the margins play their role in designer's Instagram page. Content with borders makes a profile much easier to explore, so this segregation has definitely been revolutionary in social media. More complex style of a profile would be a collage - when your photos overlap, and here the margins play big roles, as what makes this profile beautiful is the composition and balance between images.

 

As we said in the first paragraph, layouts can be useful for creating your brand. If you decide to stick to your signature layout, social media is your absolute sidekick.

 

About the author:

Nina Petrov is an activist, poet, performer and mathematician. She communicates with the world mostly through words, movement and equations, but sometimes also by speaking very loudly. The only truth she could say about herself is that she keeps changing every day, never stops learning and interacting with her surroundings.

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10 Highly Effective Tips To Spruce Up Your Website Design


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In the recent past, the internet has taken over every sector of the world’s economy. Thanks to the power of the internet, today, it’s easier to serve a client regardless of his or her geographic location. As a result, many businesses have witnessed a rise in sales. Surprisingly, even the newbies can now have a share of the pie in the already flooded market. The website is one of the few internet tools, and that has seen many businesses continue to thrive.    

 

However, the idea is not to have just a website. It’s about creating a website that can win you a high return. For sites, especially the business related, conversion is always the first thing to consider. You should ask yourself, how active is the website when it comes to converting your traffic into customers? If your traffic doesn’t match the conversions, then something is wrong with your site. Many factors may contribute to the problem. However, web design has a powerful impact on your buyers and choices.

 

Without further ado, here are the top 10 ways you can improve website design.

1. Plan the design from the visitor’s perspective

The first and the most important thing to consider is the plan. Unless you’re a magician, you can never design a site blindly, and earn rewards. Today, there are many designs in the market to borrow. However, each model is suitable for a specific client base. When planning the model, you should put yourself in the customer’s shoes to derive a site that meets their demand.  

 

While in your customer’s shoes, recreate the journey from the first time they bump into your website to when they become your customers. After understanding the tour, you will be able to come up with pages that your clients will view along. With such a plan, you will be in a position to design short pages, and with all the information that keeps the visitor glued to your website. The idea is a long-term project to winning customers. You should understand that not everyone has the time to go through all the crap only to locate some little info.

2. Choose the perfect color theme

The color theme is also one of the critical things that you should have at the back of your mind before putting the design into work. Color has the power to relay the message. After all, it’s the first thing that catches your visitors attention. Therefore, you should take your time to come up with a color theme that will win the hearts of your target audience.  

 

At times, it’s usually difficult to pick a suitable color based on the many colors out there. That’s why you should first research your target audience to come up with a design that meets their taste. For example, if you’re targeting the men, try working with black, blue and green. For the ladies, bright colors such as purple, pink, and green go well. Also, the color theme should somewhat blend with your brand. Don’t confuse your visitors. Let them feel that the website and the brand are the same things.  

3. Use real images

Whether you own a business site or an individual site, winning the trust of your visitor is vital. The choice of photos you upload on the website plays a crucial role when it comes to changing the customer’s perspective about you. Today, you can acquire images online and which match your site. The images can at times grab the people’s attention. But, it’s advisable to avoid such pictures for the sake of converting your visitor into customers. Successful entrepreneurs always insist that your website is an advertising tool. Like any other advert, use of real images on sites is essential. It’s advisable to use the pictures of your employees, for example, or those of famous people. Your visitors can easily relate with people they know and hence developing some trust in your business. Such images make your site look legit to the visitors as compared to one stuffed with unfamiliar photos. Also, you can have pictures of people in the background of landing pages. A recent study revealed that this technique boosts the conversions.  

4. Choose to scroll over clicking  

Professional web designers always insist that one should prioritize scrolling over clicking when it comes to designing a website. However, most of the sites have their bulk info compressed into sliders or accordions and hence the many clicks. Not long ago, a study revealed that visitors like scrolling over clicking. The fact that the clicks require the sites to reload makes it unbearable, especially for the users with poor network coverage.

 

For example, not long ago, Crazy Egg converted their many pages into a 20-times longer page. As a result, their conversions went up by 30 percent which is a good figure. Therefore, it’s high time you reconsidered your page layout to improve efficiency. With a single page, the high chances are that your visitors will view every part of the document. While for the many pages, the chances are that the user will get bored of clicking while on the third page.  

5. Keep it simple

As stated earlier, there are many website designs in the market today. Some are complex while others are easy to comprehend. When designing a website, you should know that not all users are computer literates. Therefore, you should keep the site simple and straightforward. Don’t choose those complex themes and designs that are hard to understand.

 

Remember, the aim of the website isn’t to showcase your designing prowess but to win the hearts of potential customers. For example, you can try working with the single-column designs. They make the site look clear and easy to read through. Also, the users enjoy layouts that they can easily relate. Therefore, you must ensure that the design is standard. However, you can play along with the colors and themes to make the site stand out in the crowd.

6. Keep the speed in check  

Many are times you go browsing a website, and it takes longer to open. What strikes you first is that you’re low on data or the Wi-Fi connection has gone down. However, after trying a different site, you notice that it’s the site that has a problem. Speed is one of the most important things that you should have in mind before introducing the website to the world.  

 

Various studies have shown that the speed has a significant impact on the user’s satisfaction, as well as, conversion rate and which is crucial. The truth is, when the site is slow, users will not be willing to stick around for long. Also, search engines consider your site’s speed when it comes to the rankings. Therefore, it’s advisable to seek the professional website design services to come up with a strategy that makes your site as first as possible.  

7. Get found

Currently, the business sector, for example, has continued to grow with new entrepreneurs emerging often. The trend has increased the competition even in the online platforms. Today, with the many businesses offering similar products, it’s usually a challenge to win recognition. Therefore, when designing a website, you should come up with a site that can be found easily.

 

For example, the site’s name should match that of your brand. The matching is helpful, especially to those new customers. That’s is, they can get to access your site by searching your brand name on the search engines. Search engine optimization is also a strategy that you should highly consider when it comes getting your website found. SEO considers the search terms that your potential customers are likely to search.  

 

With the terms in mind, you should come up with content that matches the needs of your visitors. Luckily, you can utilize the many forms of content available to come up with a proper SEO. However, be sure to research on what your target audience is searching. The research helps in coming up with keywords that will translate into higher conversions.  

8. Mobile optimization

The advancements in tech have played a significant role when it comes to improving the lives of individuals across the globe. Now and then, new improvements make their way into the already filled market. For example, a smartphone is one of the gadgets that you can never ignore. It holds the key to the future. Accessing the internet is one of the few ways the smartphones have come to the rescue of both the entrepreneurs and the customers. Today, with a smartphone and a connection to the internet, you can order some goods from any geographic location. Various studies have revealed that about 80 percent of internet users use a smartphone. Also, another study states that smartphone owners get to spend most of their day scrolling through their phones. With such a promising figure in mind, you should consider trapping the opportunities offered by the smartphones. Come up with a site that favors almost every smartphone in the market.

 

According to Google, about 61 percent of users are unlikely to return to a site that they had trouble accessing earlier. Therefore, you should ensure that your site is the first place they sought after and that means making it simple for all the phones to load. You need to ask yourself why the visitors are using their smartphone to access your site and what things they are seeking. From the finding, it can be easier to implement a design that allows them to do things efficiently.

9. Implement call-to-action  

As many web developers will tell you, your website is like your house. That is, whenever visitors come, they wait for you to give them directions on which room they can enter. Therefore, to improve your website’s effectiveness, you must guide your visitors from the first page to the last. Make sure they come across every information that is necessary. You should understand that your visitors don’t know what to do next when they land on your first page. Therefore, directions are a must. There are many ways to direct your audience. However, call-to-action buttons are one of the few successful ways to indicate the next step that the user should take.

 

The buttons are successful in that they can guide the users based on what they require in specific and not generalizing. Besides, you can incorporate call-to-action buttons that provide your audience with educative materials or solve their pain points. Such buttons portray your company as resourceful, and the audience will be willing to return for more info or your services in specific.

10.Follow and share buttons

When it comes to experiencing the real power of the internet, follow buttons are among the vital things to give a priority. They are the key to enriching your internet presence. If your website doesn’t have the buttons to your social media platforms, then you’re missing a lot when it comes to improving the traffic. You should introduce the buttons. The buttons ensure that your visitors follow you on the social media pages. From the pages, it’s easy for the visitor to track your activities as compared to the website.  

 

Also, remember to include the social sharing buttons in your website and the content. As many successful entrepreneurs would tell you, you build a business empire from your existing contacts. When it comes to the sites, your contacts are the random visitors. Therefore, you should provide them with the share buttons for every content you publish on the web.  In return, they might share the links with friends, and hence the traffic is generated magically. The fantastic thing about these two strategies is that they are long-term projects. That’s, once the buttons are shared, they will remain there and still generate traffic as long as the internet exists. Therefore, don’t hesitate to make the right move.

 

Today, and with the competitive business sector, coming up with a website is vital. A site is a key to more and more clients. However, designing a website can be hectic, especially for those individuals who have little knowledge about the computing and internet world. In this article, there are top ten ways you can make a useful website. Read the tips carefully and enhance each one of them. It is also advisable to seek the help of qualified website designers. Almost all of them have a broad experience and can assist you in coming up with a successful site.

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8 awesome names inspired by colors


What is your favorite color? We all have certain colors we like better than others. Today we'll go though the list of eight beautiful colors, which were so popular that they made it into names, and they are still used around the world.

 

1. Pink

Name Pink is standing for "a healthy person", inspired by this enthusiastic, cheerful color. Clearly, the singer Pink had something to do with the trend of this name in 2002. It might have not been that much popular since, but it still remains one of the most beautiful unique names.

 

2. Gray

Gray is sometimes shot for Graham, but it sound super elegant as a middle or last name. There is something sophisticated in gray colors, simple and decisive. Gray would be the head of the company with that name.

 

3. Violet

Violet is a very popular name today. It gained it's popularity from "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" book and movies, where we were introduced to Violet Beauregard, who loved to chew gums. Purple color stands for nobility and ambition, yet violet somehow has a touch of innocence and purity in the spectrum.

 

 

4. Rose

Rose has been shown to be a timeless name, it is good choice for first and middle name at all eras. When we think of this name, some might think of the "Titanic", but what the color itself is presenting within this name is someone to be admired and someone who is a happy and honest person.

 

5. Aurelia

Aurelia and similar versions of this name come from a Latin word actually. The meaning of this word is "golden". Golden color, being close to yellow and brown, is what we associate with magical, illuminating and wise.

 

 

6. Ruby

Ruby is a powerful and hot name. It comes from ruby red color, which is strong, independent, exciting and dangerous. This color is what suits a passionate, motivating leader, a person who is bold and goes for challenges.

 

7. Melanie

The origin of this name is Greek, and it comes from the color black. A person that this color and name would suit is someone mystical, gentle, authoritative and prestigious. If your parents gave you this name, they must have had high expectations :)

 

8. Green

Not many people have this name as their surname, although it works great for a "Friends" character, Rachel Green. Still, this remains an interesting middle name and it's very nature friendly, energetic and optimistic. Personally, one of my favorites from this list.

What do you think of our choice? Do you have your personal favorites? You can tell us in the comment section bellow.

 

About the author:

Nina Petrov is an activist, poet, performer and mathematician. She communicates with the world mostly through words, movement and equations, but sometimes also by speaking very loudly. The only truth she could say about herself is that she keeps changing every day, never stops learning and interacting with her surroundings.

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Easy-to-do DIY techniques for decorating your phones


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Introduction:

From the advent of the 21st century, technology has been integrated into our lives. Even more so with the invention of the smartphones. Our smartphones have become an essential part of our lives. These days, they are like an extension to our hand. So, for the fashionistas, the phones should also match their style statement. Here we present some really cool and easy DIY techniques using which you can create astoundingly distinctive covers for your mobile phones.  

Embroidered Phone Case:

If you like handmade accessories then this technique is definitely for you. You can easily make an embroidered handmade phone case for your smartphone by just following these simple steps;

Materials:

  • Embroidery Floss
  • Embroidery needle (size 8)
  • Perforated phone case
  • Scissors

Steps:

Use a perforated phone case and print out a design template on it.

You can create any woven pattern you want either cross stitch or back stitch.

For cross-stitch, you can use the perforated pattern of the case to easily sew the cross stitch pattern onto the phone case.

In order, to make back stitch pattern consider 3 holes on the plastic phone cover i.e. 1, 2 &3. Now insert the needle from inwards and take it out at 1. Secondly, insert the needle at 2 and take it out at 3. Now, again Insert at 1 but this time pull it out at 3. Repeat this pattern creating equal stitches until the pattern is completed over the whole phone cover.

Decoupaging your Old Phone Case:

This one is another great technique of decorating your old phone case into a completely new and unique piece of art. All you need to do is follow these simple steps;

Materials

  • Leftover fabric
  • Decoupage finishing glue
  • Paintbrush
  • Transparent plastic phone cover
  • Crafting knife
  • Scissors

Steps:

First of all, take the fabric and place it on a flat surface.

Secondly, take the transparent phone case and brush the decoupage glue all over its outside surface of the phone case & remember to cover its sides too.

Now place the phone case onto the fabric and cover it with the fabric neatly by curving it around the edges.  

Wrap the fabric all around the phone case, pinching it until it sticks onto to the case properly. Apply more decoupage if needed.

Let it dry for several hours and after that trim off the excessive cloth using scissors.

At last, use the crafting knife to cut the holes for charger, lens, and buttons on the newly made phone case.

Pearl Case:

This one is an extremely easy yet chic piece of art for your smartphone.

Materials:

  • Transparent phone case
  • Pearls
  • Broach
  • Permanent Glue

Steps:

Apply glue onto the back of the transparent phone case.

Place the broach or any other jewelry piece at the left-sided corner near the bottom of the case.

Now add other pearls and beads onto the case in such a way that the whole case covered.

Let it dry completely for 5-6 hours.

Voila! Your stunning pearl case is ready to use.

We hope that you will be able to create some unique phone cases using these easy DIY techniques. Since you’re going to have a dandy phone now, be sure to install a phone tracker on your cell phone to keep evil hands off of it.

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The Power of Color in Branding


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Understanding the power of color in branding can be extremely beneficial to those devising marketing strategies for businesses both small and large. Color is primarily associated with aesthetics, and this on its own is already an important factor in branding. However, color impacts much more than cosmetics. It can also help brands establish their message, improve brand recognition, and even drive website conversions. In this post, we’ll focus on branding and go through some telling facts and figures related to the impact of color, its relevance regarding brand message and brand recognition.

 

Color matters and research focusing on its impact has unveiled that it actually matters quite a bit. Information compiled by Design Advisor highlights that a potential customer takes, on average, 90 seconds to assess a product; in that short time, color is said to account for between 62 and 90% of the decision to purchase or not.

 

In terms of specific products, the set of options available for purchase can heavily affect sales, as two-thirds of customers will not buy an appliance if it isn’t available in their preferred color. These figures give us an introductory picture of what’s at stake. Let’s move on to specific cases and explore different ways of using color.

Color and meaning

Color works as a metaphor and carries symbolic connotations. Think of all the times you’ve gone through color motifs in literature class or heard praise of a particular way in which a movie director constructed a color palette in their film.

 

Having said that, it’s worth noting that context matters. Different cultures think of certain colors in different ways, and individual memories and emotions also factor into interpretations. However, color psychology helps us understand the common ways in which color is interpreted and associated, as well as the type of feelings it can convey to the observer.

 

For instance, green is typically associated with nature and connotes feelings of growth and harmony. Notably, it is used by businesses that wish to establish an eco-friendly or ethical approach, and many food companies use it to help associate their product with healthy foods.

 

Black connotes elegance and authority, which is why brands such as Jaguar, Mont Blanc, and Yves Saint Laurent utilize it in their logos and general design strategies. Another common choice for businesses wishing to convey a sense of elegance and polish is white. White is more approachable, yet still associated with perfection, which helps brands such as Apple set themselves apart without alienating market segments.        

 

It’s good to keep in mind that although differences in preference between genders are not stark, men tend to prefer bolder colors and shades, while women tend to prefer soft colors and tints. Still, sky blue and green are most liked by both women and men, which makes them good options for unisex brands, in the markets where this makes sense.

 

Brand recognition and storytelling

Up until now, we discussed color and its meaning, with examples drawn mainly from logo designs. However, there is much more to it than this. As mentioned earlier, color accounts for up to 80% of a business’s brand recognition.

 

Brands rely on specific colors to establish their identity and ensure quick recognition by potential customers. For example, Facebook is blue, Netflix is red, and McDonald’s plays with a combination of red and yellow. The repeated use of certain colors in a strategic way establishes a connection between the color and a brand. Think of it this way: wouldn’t Facebook’s page look odd if its interface was a different color?

 

Many up and coming brands are testing impact and recognition factors by alternating the color they use in their ads and choosing the most effective one. Research indicates that the effectiveness of color in branding depends on how appropriate it is for the product being sold; in other words, whether the color used in the branding thematically “fits” the brand. Thus, it is key to think of a brand’s story and overall message, before choosing a color scheme to represent it. Heinz, for example, decided to change their scheme from red to green and experienced the largest sales increase in their history.

 

When utilized correctly, colors can be a powerful profit driving tool. Consumers are more likely to choose an easily recognizable brand, which means that increasing and improving a business’s presence through strategies mentioned above can lead to gaining loyal customers.

 

Final thoughts

In an increasingly competitive environment, businesses ranging from small corner shops to huge multinational corporations would be wise to dig deep into their chest of branding tools and use everything to their advantage. Color can act as one such successful tool for brands attempting to set themselves apart, increase the intensity of their brand message, or simply wishing to establish themselves as a recognized brand. Smart use of color is the way to go.

 

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How to Improve Your Small Business's Social Media Presence


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The only way to grow your business is to gain new customers. One cost-effective way to secure new leads is via social media. However, it's difficult to know where to concentrate your efforts for the best chance of success.

Social media continues to grow in numbers and frequency of use. Facebook has about 2.2 billion active users each month, and other social media sites are on an upward trend as well. However, just throwing stuff out there — whether on Facebook or another social media site — isn't the most effective use of your marketing time or dollars.

If you want to improve your social media presence, here are seven key steps you need to take as soon as possible.

1. Know Your Audience

"Know your audience" is good advice for nearly every type of marketing. It's the basis of figuring out where to have a social media presence and how to reach the specific demographic of people you most want to reach. There are many ways to improve your knowledge of your audience.

Start by studying your website analytics. Who visits your site? Where are they from, and what type of device do they use? Collect as much information as you can. Next, look at your audience on social media right now. You'll also want to study the audience of your competitors and poll your current customers. Collecting all this data and looking at it as a whole allows you to gain a pretty good picture of who your audience is.

2. Connect With Younger Generations

Once you have an idea who your typical customer is, take the time to figure out how best to connect with the younger generations. Millennials are one of the largest generations in history, starting to surpass even the baby boomers. Gen Z is right behind them and coming into buying power of their own. If you want your business to remain healthy far into the future, you must connect with those who will be customers for many years to come.

The younger generations want a clean, uncluttered look on your website. They also want to be able to connect easily with your social media channels. Include links on your page so that they can like your social media with a single click or two.

3. Stick to Your Color Scheme

It's important to choose a color scheme and stick to it across all your channels. If you use blue and white on your website, use the same blue on your social media channels. While you can change the look a bit, the page should still be immediately recognizable as your brand. Different colors evoke different emotions in people, so choose wisely based on the emotions you're trying to inspire.

 

Shopify has a green shopping bag logo, and they use this same color bag and logo across all their online presences. Note the green logo used on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and their website. The minute you land on any of these pages, you instantly recognize that logo, which is highly relevant to the shopping cart services they offer.

4. Measure Successful Campaigns

About 56 percent of businesses use social media metrics to track likes, shares and comments and figure out which campaigns work. When you see which ads perform best and which target audiences respond the most, you can use the money you spend on social media ads more effectively. The more information you have, the better. Part of this strategy goes back to point one of knowing your audience, but you also have to see the ways that audience performs on the specific social media platforms you're on.

5. Use Facebook to Reach Everyone

If you choose only one social media network on which to start, choose Facebook. The most commonly used social media platform is Facebook, boasting 79 percent of US-based people who are online. Even the rapidly growing Instagram is only a distant second place, at 32 percent of American internet users. While older generations do use Facebook more frequently than the younger generations, most individuals still maintain some presence on the social media giant to stay updated about family and friends.

6. Train Your Social Media Team in Customer Service

When consumers have a positive experience with a brand on social media, they're 71 percent more likely to recommend that brand to others. Spend time training your social media managers in your customer service philosophy, how to handle complaints and engaging with people online. The more positive the experience, the more likely people are to share information about your brand with others and expand your social media reach.

 

Adobe has a page on Twitter devoted to customer service called Adobe Care. Note how they respond to a customer complaint above. They apologize for the problem, let the customer know what's being done and offer a temporary solution. They also respond quickly rather than leaving the customer hanging.

7. Automate and Schedule Your Posts

Even the most diligent social media manager gets busy with other campaigns and misses a post here and there. Fortunately, some tools allow you to schedule ahead of time so that you never miss another timely post again. Automate posts by using apps such as Missingltr, PromoRepublic and HubSpot to automatically generate campaigns based on blog posts and fill out your calendar.

Some tools are free, and some cost a monthly fee. Use what you can afford, and as your company grows, invest in better tools that automate more of your processes.

Improve Your Social Media Presence

These seven tips generate a better social media presence for your brand. You can take several small steps on a daily basis that will improve your social media reach, such as adding vibrant photos, investing in video and finding your voice as a brand. With time, you'll gain more followers and drive more traffic to your site from your social media pages.

 

 

Lexie is a graphic designer and typography enthusiast. She spends most of her time A/B testing websites and creating style guides. Check out her blog, Design Roast, and follow her on Twitter @lexieludesigner.

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Awesome tools for exploring color palettes


In the never-ending seek for inspiration, new ideas that will blow our minds away, we've stumbled across these interesting tools that could offer you various ways of bringing something fresh in your design work. Whether you lack innovation or just want to play around with colors, these handy tools will take you on a trip trough time, space and internet to give you what you want.

 

 

1. time travel by color

Is your current design project asking to be a little more retro? Needs some funk and crispy taste of the past of mankind? We present you a platform called Color Leap, unique gallery of chosen artwork from over 4000 years of our past.

How is this online tool useful for you? The website stores over 180 palettes of artworks from all around the world. For every time period, you can find a selection of paintings or designs, check their palettes and copy their hex-codes right into your project. For every moment in time, you can also see additional palettes which relate to this epoch.

Whether you are looking for a vintage, 60's style design, or diving all the way back in the ancient civilizations, this unique timeline can provide you with fresh ideas and suggest palettes you might have not considered before.

 

 

2. the grass is always greener

...or what code should I use to present nature this time? Tired of having to try out all kinds of RGB shades every single time you get a new project? What if there was a tool which can just select the most suitable color for the terms your design relates to...?

Turns out, there is. The description found on their website is "Google, but for colors". And they basically are. Picular is a tool which uses Google Search and the result of Picular search is a selection of the most used shades which relate to your searched term.

What this app does is selects the prominent colors from top 20 images which Google Search locates under the search term. So, next time you are feeling playful, try out some interesting abstract terms, let the avangard inspire you, discover the color of loneliness, jungle and confidence, based on images of people from all around the world.

We hope you liked our new suggestions, and that these tools can help you unlock creativity, get inspired and overcome the routine in your work flow.

Have you tried Color Leap or Picular yet? Share your impressions and experience in the comment section bellow.

 

Author: Nina Petrov

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How to Design Killer Sales Copy for Your Website


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The quality and design of your sales copy are just as important as your product or service. You may have the most outstanding product or service in the world, but if the design of your copy is not compelling, It may not move your audience to become loyal to your offering.

 

If you want your sales copy to convince and convert here are some of the things you need to keep in mind as you move from the basics of grammar, vocabulary and syntax.

Your Headline

 

The headline is the most critical part of your sales copy. Your headline should capture the attention of the visitors and suck them into the body of your sales copy.

 

Remember you have only ten seconds at most to capture the attention of your prospects or they will just click away. You can quickly achieve that by having the most significant benefit of your product in the headline of your sales copy.

 

Put simply, the headline should be benefit-driven, attention-grabbing and made to persuade the reader of your sales copy to keep reading.

 

Beyond the words used, you need to factor in colour and headline design. Colour, for example, has a significant impact when it comes to the users' response.

 

Facebook demonstrated this when they switched from blue notification icons to red ones.

 

To keep their branding recognisable, then initially used blue icons. But nobody clicked on them. When they changed to red icon notifications, everyone clicked on them almost immediately. The colour became irresistible.

 

So too with your headlines. If you want to capture the attention of your audience, who often do not read beyond the headline, you need to factor in branded and persuasive colour and typography into your sales copy titles.

 

Bullet Points

 

You should use bullets to highlight the benefits of your product or service.

 

Bullet points are highly readable, and they tend to stop the reader in their tracks and enable them to absorb short, simple facts or suggestions.

 

As a matter of design, indenting those bullet points has a significant impact on readability and should be factored into your overall sales copy design.

 

Remember, most people will not read the sales copy but skim through it and bullets enable you to focus their attention on the benefits of your product.

 

Benefits vs Features

 

We already know how important it is to focus on the benefits of using your product as opposed to the features of your product.

 

For example, the phrase “comfortable mattress” describes a feature but “Wake up relaxed and ready to face the day ahead” goes further to show the benefits of the feature.

But equally important is the layout and use of colour to distinguish between benefits and, features - both positive and negative.

 

The use of lookbook creators to highlight features and comparisons in fashion and clothing is a great way example of using colour and design to highlight a product's features.

Bolding and Highlighting

 

Bolding and underlining emphasise essential points or phrases.

 

Highlighting those same points in yellow and adjusting the typography and position can make those points even more compelling and effective.

 

Of course, you don’t want to overdo it, or you will lose the intended purpose in the first place.

 

The Call to Action

 

You should have an active call to action throughout your sales copy. For example, you can include such calls to action as “Click here to unlock your potential right now!” or “Click here to discover the secrets now!

 

You should also create a sense of urgency so that your prospects are motivated to take action right away.

 

Writing a good sales copy is one thing that you must invest your time to learn and practice if you are to make good money from your sales copy efforts.

 

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