Why Websites Still Rule
In 1999, the first website went live. You can still see it here. Fast-forward about two decades, and Wired magazine has declared "The Web Is Dead," stating "one of the most important shifts in the digital world has been the move from the wide-open Web to semiclosed platforms that use the Internet for transport but not the browser for display." The article asserts that internet-accessible apps will supersede the web - essentially, the website is obsolete!
SexyButton – A Responsive, Universal, HTML Email Button
Running an email marketing campaign is something that virtually anyone in the advertising, design, or development industry has encountered at some point or another. Let's face it — email marketing is an extremely effective way of sending a message (whether that is a commercial, political, or other) to a large number of people. Just a couple of years ago, US firms alone spent over $1.5 billion on email marketing. However you slice it, it's a powerful marketing tool, so knowing the nuances and tricks to stash in your utility belt for a rainy day will make your campaigns all the more effective.
The tip I'm going to discuss today is how to create that element which is a part of any good marketer's email newsletter: the call-to-action button. Think of all of the newsletters and email blasts that you receive. I'll bet that there's a button of some sort in there. And chances are that said button is prompting you to do something — visit a website, purchase an item, slam your head against the keyboard, etc. That's the purpose of a call-to-action button, to direct your viewer to complete the action you'd like them to do. The best ones will persuade and even command the user to act without thinking. Kind of like The Force.
Experimenting with Options for Responsive Wireframing
At Blueprint, we are actively working to revamp our processes to better accommodate our clients' needs for mobile-friendly and responsive web design solutions. It used to be effective to create one wireframe and design comp to show clients what a final, developed homepage would look like. But these days, that approach only goes so far toward helping us plan — and communicate to our clients — how a site layout and design will look and change when viewed on different devices.
The SEED Foundation and Blueprint Launch New Responsive Site
Last week, Blueprint helped The SEED Foundation launch a site for their upcoming school in Cincinnati.
The SEED Foundation operates college-prep public boarding schools in Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, MD. The SEED School of Cincinnati, opening in 2014, will be SEED’s first school outside of the Mid-Atlantic region. The organization needed a way to introduce SEED and explain their model to potential donors, parents, students, and community members in Ohio.
If we can make websites responsive, what about online advertising?
At Blueprint, we design websites, landing pages, print materials, and online ads. With election season upon us, these days we're especially busy with the latter! For any given campaign, we typically design an ad at 300x250 pixels — a standard ad size. Once our client approves it, we resize it to any other required dimensions (commonly, 728x90 and 160x600, but sometimes also 300x50 and even smaller for display on mobile devices). This very manual process takes significant time and has left me wondering, if we can make websites responsive, is there a way we can make advertisements responsive? (for a description about responsive web design, see my earlier post, Blueprint Goes Responsive)
Unfortunately, the answer is not so fast. Some quick research confirmed my suspicions about some of the complications and gave me a sense of where the industry is in making it a common practice. I thought I'd share...
Wrangling the Retina
So as you may know, we have began working with responsive sites. We have been working on making our site responsive whenever we find the free time to do so. Once we eventually finish, I want to write an article explaining the entire development process. In the mean time, I want to take a second to explain, demonstrate and bust a few myths about retina images and the future of images on the web.
Blueprint Goes Responsive: Part 3
Here at Blueprint, things are moving right along with our effort to make our blog and website responsive. In my last post, Blueprint Goes Responsive: Part 2, I talked about our wireframing phase. Since then, we've done a little bit of design to flesh out how the interface would look at our smallest breakpoint, 320px wide. We may or may not do some mock-ups for intermediary breakpoints (TBD once development proceeds).
Blueprint Goes Responsive: Part 2
A few weeks ago I started blogging about our process to make our company blog and website responsive. I'm happy to report that we are making steady progress. My marching order from our initial kickoff was to roughly mock up what the blog would look like at our smallest breakpoint, 320px wide, as a guide for our initial functional prototype. Well, after a quick start, I decided to take a step back and wireframe some directions so our team could collaborate and decide on some key things:
Blueprint Goes Responsive
We always aim to be responsive to what our clients need and want, but these days, that’s not enough. Now even our website will be responsive! It’s not responsive yet, but this week we kicked off our effort to make it so.
We thought it might be instructive to share our ideas and process with you as we go. So this will be our first of a series of posts on this topic. Learn with us as we learn!
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