5 Tips for Working with Fonts

Most small business owners find themselves creating their own proposals, presentations, reports and memos. They don’t have the time or the money to have a designer available to create everything. Here are few tips to use fonts wisely so your materials still look professional. Limit the number of fonts. That long list of typefaces that comes up when you go to choose a font can be mesmerizing. However, stick to one or two only. You can still use the bold and italics within each typeface. A few combinations that are tried & true are: a serif face for long running type and a sans serif for headlines; a sans serif for body copy and a fun, decorative font for headlines; serif type for the main copy and serif type for sidebars. Even better, just choose one typeface for the entire piece and only change the size and weight. Don’t underline anything other than a link. Underlined text is now universally… Continue Reading »

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Naming your Business to Attract the Right Clients

One of the most exciting parts of starting a business is coming up with a name. The name becomes central to the brand and can help you define your target audience. The Senior Citizen Barber Shop I read a fun story about the local Senior Citizen Barber Shop and how it got it’s name. The full story is in the Portland Press Herald and below are the key passages: Q: What did the shop used to be called? A: Longfellow Barber Shop. That changed when the hippies came out in the ’60s. It was kind of funny, the telephone company called up and asked me, “What do you want to put in your ad?” I wanted to say something about senior citizens, but they kept saying you can’t do this, you can’t do that. Then finally she said, “Let’s start over. What’s the name of the shop again?” I told her “Senior Citizen Barber Shop.” She said, “When did that… Continue Reading »

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Email Marketing Proven to Build Loyalty

A recent study shows that permission-based email campaigns overwhelmingly have a positive influence on consumer behavior. The study of 1517 consumers, completed by marketing agency Epsilon, showed that 57% of consumers feel they have a more positive impression of companies when they receive email from them. In addition, email builds consumer loyalty, increases purchasing both on- and off-line, and generates a positive impression of the sending company. Highlights of the study This study was focused on businesses in Financial Services, Retail, Consumer Packaged Goods, and Pharmaceuticals/Healthcare, but the statistics are so overwhelming there should be a takeaway for all businesses. Also, the study was not just focused on open and click-through rates, it was looking to shed light on brand building. Some things that really jumped out at me: 57% of respondents said they remembered a company when making a purchase online, even when they didn’t use the email link itself to make the purchase. 50% said they’re more likely… Continue Reading »

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Starting a Blog: Tips Based on 60 Days of Blogging

It has been an interesting journey starting this blog. I actually have previously helped a few of my client’s with their own blogs, but this is a first for me personally. I thought I’d share my thoughts and tips now that I am at day 60 of running the blog. Start with a soft launch A soft launch means that you are using the blog tools and adding content, but you’re not screaming for attention yet. If you choose to use WordPress you can even turn off the ability for Google and other search engines to find you. (If you do this, make sure you remember to turn it back on later!) By adding content before you officially go live, you will have a few articles and entries to interest readers when they do arrive. For Visible Logic’s blog, I created posts before adding the link to the blog into the navigation of the site. That means the blog was… Continue Reading »

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Good Design vs. Good Branding: Tropicana Case Study

You’ve probably heard by now that Tropicana redesigned their orange juice cartons, but then received so much negative feedback they’ve decided to revert to their old design. This is an example of how design in a vacuum can lead to terrible branding decisions. The design changes For years, Tropicana used their image of the straw in the orange to suggest a fresh-from-the-orchard taste. That image was backed up by a package design that had a sense of old-time farm stand signage while still being clean and modern looking. On the other hand, their new design shows orange juice poured into a wine glass sort of goblet. The placement of the glass is off-center in a way that abstracts the image. The typography changed from featuring the brand name top & center, to rotating it 90-degrees. The remaining type is sans serif and set in a modern and minimalist way. Personally I favor the old version because the colors are richer,… Continue Reading »

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