Tag Archives: web development

How to Design for Engagement by Making Use of Colour, Type and Space

design tips

I don’t know about you but I see design as something personal – something that moves the heart. If a design was a real person, I’m pretty sure it would be multi-tasking. Not only can a design show beautiful art to the eyes, a design can also be useful for many things. I’m sure you guys know why someone invented card holders. Yes, card holders are designed to keep your cards secure and neat. Aside from that, a design can also change the mood of a person. Trust me, I was all grumpy and upset when the Uber driver I booked was impatient to wait for me this afternoon that he left me after I walked far to get there. However, soon as I got another Uber driver, I was mesmerised by his car design that made me comfortable and even forget my anger. It is the power of design. If you have a business, surely, design is something you should prioritise. Whether it is your product design, packaging design, or even your web design; you should prioritise its usability, not its design looks only. In this article, I’m going to tell you how to design your website with engagement in mind using colour, type and space. Keep reading to find out!

Colour

Colour is a powerful tool in a design. When it comes to visual communication, few features are more effective at attracting attention and influencing our feelings and perceptions—which is what makes colour such an important part of establishing a mood in your design. Colour also has a way to understand your language. Why do we say people are “seeing red” when they’re angry or “feeling blue” when they are sad? That’s because colour can connect to our moods and emotions in a unique way. So, how do we create a mood using colour? In design and branding, pure or bright yellow can attract attention well, much like red, but generally creates more friendly and fun feeling. Yes, we have to choose colour carefully.

Type

When I say “type” in this article, I meant “fonts” or “typeface.” Yes, this is also an important part of design. If colour was the face, type was the language you would use for speaking with your audience. Font choices often set the tone for the whole design and can influence viewers’ feelings toward and interactions with your design, which is why it is so important that a font’s mood fits with the context of your project.

Space

If colour was the face, type was the language, then space was the…space you were giving to your audience. We’ve probably all seen designs that are so packed with text and imagery that it’s hard to even know what you’re looking at. How did that design make you feel? Confused? Stressed? Repulsed?

The visual space in a design can have a big impact on how viewers interact with and perceive your design. A good composition that’s easy to navigate will help viewers feel comfortable and encourage them to spend more time with your design. A cluttered or messy layout, on the other hand, may cause your audience to decide not to engage with your design at all. The space you are using is how you make it easier for your audience to understand your content.

When you understand the meaning of space, type and colour, you can also understand your customers as a whole. Therefore, you can also engage with your customers in a more effective way and fun at the same time.

Dealing with Alternative Facts: The Importance of Truth in your Brand Storytelling and Marketing

marketing tips

Looking back on 2016, the decision by Oxford’s Dictionary to name ‘post-truth’ as their word of the year feels remarkably prescient. I honestly thought that the fudging of the truth done by Brexit campaigners and Trump’s liberal use of facts were going to be an aberration, that ‘post-truth’ is just going to a word-of-the-moment thing that would quickly fall out of favor but it turns out I was wrong. We’re now about 6 months into 2019 and it’s been firmly established that we’re now living in a post-truth era.

The year 2016 opened up our eyes on how disruptively powerful fake news can be, especially when combined with the far-reaching power of social media. On a large scale, they can be used to effectively hijack a referendum and a presidential election while on a much smaller scale, these distortions of truths and facts can be used to create a brand narrative to bolster its standings. It’s the latter that is going to be the focus of our discussion and one that should be of particular interest to marketers and SEO services alike.

Brand storytelling in the age of alternative facts

Mere weeks after 2016 ended, Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager and now counselor to the president, underscored the absurdity of the age we live in when she used the phrase ‘alternative facts’ in a discussion about the attendance numbers for Trump’s inauguration, which was notably smaller than the one for Obama’s. Last year, just as Robert Mueller’s investigation into Trump’s administration was ramping up, the president’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, made waves by saying that ‘truth isn’t truth’ and that facts are essentially in the eyes of the beholder.

This depressing line of thinking isn’t just strictly limited to the political world; we’ve seen several marketing examples in the past few years that eerily resemble these talking points. First, we have the comically absurd case of Billy McFarland’s Fyre Festival, where a promise of a luxurious festival experience in the Bahamas turned out to be a real-life reenactment of The Hunger Games. There’s also the case of Elizabeth Holmes and her company Theranos where she went from holding the number one spot in a list of richest self-made women in Forbes in 2015 to being charged for defrauding investors in 2018.

In both of these cases, they both were pushing a certain kind of narrative that holds little to no basis on the truth and as expected, the backlash for both was as harsh as they were swift. Elizabeth Holmes in particular, with a black turtleneck and an eccentric personality that is not unlike Steve Jobs, was extensively covered in the mainstream media for a few years before her house of cards came tumbling down. Both McFarland and Holmes are now famous for all the wrong reasons and that’s the kind of future prepared for you once you start playing around with the facts.

Latching on to a truthful narrative

Finding a great pair of jeans is easy; you can easily find quality raw selvedge denim made by small, premium brands all over Australia but so far, the only denim brand I actually love is Sweden’s Nudie Jeans. Not because of the quality of their product but because their commitment to sustainability. Loving a brand’s product is different from loving a brand and this is what makes brand storytelling potentially powerful as they can inspire the kind of loyalty that quality products simply won’t be able to.

The key to this loyalty however is trust and the funny thing with trust is that once they’re broken, they’re not something that could easily be regained and the internet has a ridiculously long memory. From here on out, every single time you look up McFarland’s or Holmes’ name on Google, you’re going to be presented with a chronicle of their misdeeds. I don’t know if this is a case of Wikipedia vandalism but Billy McFarland’s occupation is now listed as fraudster, not entrepreneur as he originally claimed.

Finding your own truth

A brand’s narrative is their identity and if a brand doesn’t have an identity, what would make you stand out from an ocean of similar businesses. It would be like trying to connect to a machine that churns out one product after another. Sure, the product might be of a high quality but they would be sorely lacking in personality. Dig deep into your business (or yourself) and try to find out what makes you, you and try to use the same line of thinking into your company.

A life unexamined is not a life worth living and trust me when I say that a dash of existential crisis every now and then is actually good for your soul. Asking those big questions can be life-affirming and they might be just exactly what you need to discover your brand’s truth. If you’ve been asking those questions for a while now and you still find yourself without an answer, then you might have bigger problems than just your marketing. Your brand identity should serve as the core foundation of your business, including your marketing, and without a message to send, your marketing would just be pure fluff.

Think Big, Act Bigger: Don’t Ever Think Your Small Business Doesn’t Need a Website

website for business

I always find my best friend amusing but confusing at the same time with her attitude. She always acts impulsively and without thinking twice. Basically I don’t mind that as long as she is happy. However, there is one thing that was kind of disturbing when she told me she made a business all of a sudden without planning. I was like, “Ok that’s good, so what’s your plan?” and she said, “I don’t have any plan. I think I don’t need it. It is only a small business after all.” That last part got me thinking, “Are you serious?” I wondered to myself if she would even continue her business for a long term or not. From my story, I was kind of upset that she would think of this so lightly as if her business was not important. I mean, she doesn’t even think about making her own website for her business. As a person who works at a web development and web design agency geared toward helping clients business succeed, I know very well that when it comes to having a business, small or big, there is no such a thing called “it’s only a small business.” Well, if you start a small business, do you only plan to stay that way? You aspire to improve it and turn it into a big one, right? In order for you to succeed, you have to expand your thoughts and aim for higher achievements. You can’t just stay inside your comfort zone. You have to be courageous to take steps into your business development and making a website is one of the steps you need to take. Let me tell you why.

People use the internet the same way they used to use the phone book

Remember how we used to look up for information using the phone book? Now in this digital world, we use the internet for almost everything – from shopping, gathering information, even to socialising. With Smarthphones around, potential customers decide where to go and what to buy. For that reason, your small business has to come up in local search so that they will find you instead of your competitors.

A website gives your business reliability

When people find your business online, they need to make sure that you are not some scammer. When you have a website coupled with your complete address and contacts, people are more reassured because they know you are valid.

A website gives you a chance of more recognition

There is one thing for sure when it comes to having a business website; it is the fact that a website gives you an automatic online presence. Instantly, you have another chance to introduce people to your products and services and another way for people to find you. With a website, (and if you add high quality content that is relevant to your business as well as big marketing effort) there is a higher chance that it will be easier for your target audience to find you.

Those who are courageous enough to take risks and consequences when deciding to start a business should also be willing to invest in a website for their business. While it may cost you much money, it will pay off in the long run when you give efforts for your marketing strategy. In fact, the ROI you will get is much better than the money you have spent for the website. Therefore, think big even though your business is small and act even bigger to achieve your big dream and turn your small business into a big one.