Creative Director engaging businesses with great design, sharp communications and humor. Strategic Design • Branding • Social Media • Communications
@ShiftDM Tools can be helpful, but I’d stay away from predesigned templates that just make you look like everyone else. I know someone who creates visuals by handwriting words of wisdom on napkins and then photographing them — it’s a unique approach that sets her apart visually, and shows that a little creativity goes a long way. But even more important is making sure that whatever you create is based on a firm branding foundation. The tools used are not nearly as important.
4 days, 8 hours ago on 12 Most Strategic Reasons to Brand First, Produce Visual Content Later
Well played, @samfiorella, well played.
7 months ago on 12 Most Trendy Clichés on Social Media
Now where would the social airwaves be without a healthy dose of “BooYah!,” @TheDaveReynolds ?
7 months, 1 week ago on 12 Most Trendy Clichés on Social Media
@memktgservices I’ll raise my hand for #12 too, Mandy!
@Elisabeth Daniels Hooray! Nuff said.
@KareneSmith Very true — one should begin with the end user in mind, and context is everything! These days, the general overriding context for most things is too little time and too much noise — adding to either of those things does little for whatever you might hope to accomplish.
9 months ago on 12 Most Invisible Ways Good Design May Elude You
Great tips, @BeckyGaylord — and congrats on your 50th post for 12 Most!
I especially like tips 2 and 7 — it’s always smart to know what you’re trying to achieve and following amazing people who share amazing content will pump up your own social sharing.
And yes, it’s always good to have fun! It’s easy to tell who really enjoys being on Twitter and people gravitate toward those who make them feel good.
9 months, 1 week ago on 12 Most Basic Ways for Beginners to Rock Twitter
@MZazeela The more you do it, the better you also get at it — very true!
11 months, 2 weeks ago on 12 Most Paradoxical Reasons Why Creative Limitations Are Not Limiting
@Brenden Great comments! Lots of truth there — reminds me of perhaps my favorite quote on creativity by Picasso: “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.”
1 year ago on 12 Most Pervasive Lies About Creativity
@Sandra Sallin Glad to be of service, Sandra — hope you find lots of new inspiration!
1 year, 1 month ago on 12 Most Inspired Online Resources for Creative Juice
@Sonia Thompson Nicely said, Sonia — hope you enjoy them!
@markjohn222 We have a strict “no link-dropping” policy in the re:DESIGN G+ community — makes a huge difference!
1 year, 1 month ago on 12 Most Googletastic Reasons Google+ Communities Are the Bomb
@markjohn222 I appreciate your comments — the key is finding a good community that fits your interests and has real interaction, not just a bunch of dropped links. It is also not easy to build and grow a thriving community — but the good ones are great!
@Katherine Tattersfield Thanks, Katherine — and thanks for your contributions to the community! There have been so many amazing conversations around creativity there — all about how people, companies and the world at large can benefit from design, especially in this climate of business and technological innovation. In our own small way, I feel we are making a difference.
1 year, 1 month ago on 12 Most Provocative Google Plus Posts About Design and Creativity
@Sandra Sallin She was, Sandra. I am sure she would want her important messages to continue to be spread as broadly as possible. It is remarkable to see all the stories about all the people who had a close connection with her — she was that type of person.
1 year, 2 months ago on 12 Most Practical Strategies to Beat Stress at Work
@Sandra Sallin Being able to inspire others by being yourself is a gift. I look forward to learning more about you in the coming weeks and months, and hope you will write for us again really soon!
1 year, 3 months ago on 12 Most Potent Ways to Rock It After You Hit Your 70s
I am just loving all the comments here, @Sandra Sallin — look what your post inspired! You no doubt have a presence (and a future — ha-ha) in blogging and social media — my only concern is that we don’t take you away from your “other” amazing talent! Painting!
You are the perfect conduit for helping people see the potential of engaging with people online — and I’m glad we are able to do our little part here at 12 Most. Thanks, Sandra!
Love this, Katherine — great post and very convincing reasons why people should get involved in the #onething movement. That’s right, I called it a MOVEMENT! :-)
1 year, 3 months ago on Take the #ONETHING Creative Challenge!
@LucyChenFineArt Ah yes, and I agree 100%. So much so, that I previously wrote this article: From Cave Drawings to Modern Visual Storytelling :-)
1 year, 3 months ago on 12 Most Insightful Reasons a Visual Strategy Will Power Your Business
@KatherineKotaw The feeling is mutual, Katherine — thank you so much for the kind words!
Words are crucial — visuals will help make sure those words are read (and shared, if we’re talking about social and digital channels). But beyond that, I think it is important that business’s develop programs that are strategic and consistent. Just like a traditional ad/marketing campaign or communications program, those are necessary ingredients for online efforts too — reinforcing a company’s messaging and developing brand awareness.
@hiteshsahni Absolutely, and the way you track the metrics would be the same as any other marketing effort too, which will differ depending on what is trying to be achieved. It also wouldn’t be difficult to A/B test side-by-side with alternative approaches that either don’t use a visual strategy or use different types of images.
But I think it’s hard to deny that there are fundamental truths about how we respond to visuals that give most marketing efforts a boost when done strategically and effectively, and that’s what I tried to point out here.
@biggreenpen Right, arriving at the right message is a team effort. If a designer isn’t provided what they need, they should ask the right questions to get the answers they need to provide an appropriate design/brand/visual solution, and then proceed accordingly.
In any event, design should never be created in a vacuum — it is more of a partnership — marketing, communications, investor relations, key executives and anyone else critical to the outcome should play a part.
1 year, 3 months ago on 12 Most Artful Ways to Get the Most from Your Design Investment
@LucyChenFineArt Funny how we all seem to have our own experience with the rotating woman — for me, it’s clockwise 95% of the time, but sometimes when I look away and look back, she changes direction. Interesting how size impacts how you see it — I’ll have to check that out. Thanks for your comments!
1 year, 3 months ago on 12 Most Provocative Google Plus Posts About Design and Creativity
Wow, @stephanhov — this post is great but I love the way Plussers came to assist on the Star Wars references. Glad I clicked on that link to your Google+ post — it’s a great working example of the engagement you can get on G+ with the right skills and effort. Thanks for another excellent contribution to 12 Most!
1 year, 3 months ago on 12 Most Jedi-Master Ways to Rock Google+ in 2014
@spinchick Have a feeling we’ve done that once or twice before, but yeah! :-)
1 year, 3 months ago on 12 Most Socialgasmic Days of Christmas
@spinchick Hope the fauxperts and ninjas don’t feel left out. :-)
@Katherine Tattersfield I knew I’d catch one or two of you with that line. :-)
@thefarmerslife This was an excellent post, Brian — very interesting stuff and you really brought it to life. Who knew there was so much to corn?
1 year, 4 months ago on 12 Most Corny Things You Didn’t Know About Corn
@Katherine Tattersfield I’m glad you found it too,Kathering! And glad I found this about you finding it and then sharing it in your post — win, win! Thanks! :-)
1 year, 4 months ago on 12 Most Powerful Ways Good Design Propels Business ROI
@maeganA Exactly, Maegan — if visuals began and ended as only visuals, many of them could be seen as trite. But as I say in #6, they are often the gateway to more information — information that may have never been accessed if it weren't for the visual that originally captured our attention and pointed the way.
1 year, 4 months ago on 12 Most Eye-Catching Reasons Your Business Needs to Get Visual
@DaraLin Thanks for your comments and you raise an excellent point, Dara — it NEEDS to be done well! I see lots of people beginning to grasp the concept of “getting visual,” yet it is so often done in such an amateurish way that it does nothing positive for their business presence.
I’ll be doing a follow up to this post that focuses more on visual strategy.
@boxofnuts I was hoping you’d say that. :-)
@Katherine Tattersfield I appreciate your insights, Katherine — thanks! Your example is a good one, and I’m glad you included “headline” with the “graphic.” Nothing is more powerful than the interplay of text and visual — it just needs to strike the right balance, and that’s never been truer than in today’s media environment.
@boxofnuts Thanks so much, Cheryl! As information consumers, we are always on the run so the delivery mechanism should fit the need. In other words, it’s a simple design problem, right?
1 year, 4 months ago on 12 Most Community Driven Ways to Build a Successful Digital Tribe
@Milaspage @Pamojamo All fixed — thanks!
1 year, 5 months ago on 12 Most Overlooked Blog “Set Up” Basics You’re Probably Guilty Of
@stephanhov Fantastic list of tips again, Stephan! I’m sure people will get a lot out of it — and I love your “double dipping” analogy, because that’s what you get with Google+ (in a good way, not like that famous Seinfeld episode!). :-)
1 year, 5 months ago on 12 Most Tried-and-True Tips for Personal Branding on Google+
Welcome to 12 Most, @GildaBonanno! These are all really great tips — just goes to show that one can never be too prepared — phone calls included. (And the questions that come with them!)
1 year, 6 months ago on 12 Most Winning Ways to Handle Questions When Presenting Over the Phone
@momof3and3 Yes, that’s a bit much — but perhaps more of a design issue than a content issue.
1 year, 6 months ago on 12 Most Don’t Be a Dumbass Rules for Email
@KatherineKotaw Thank you, Katherine!
Funny, but I also mentioned in the comments here just before that maybe we need one of these posts for the phone — seems people are failing miserably at it these days!
Let me know if you’re interested. :-)
@pal2tech Dear Mr. Lee —
Don’t bother — your competitor already contacted me.
The best customer you’ll never know
@pal2tech This is obviously a complex issue and will vary depending on industry, company, and even how different managers run their departments and how they set expectations. Yet we all need to communicate with each other as quickly and efficiently as possible.
We’re talking about email here and I know you mentioned that the phone is a better method when something is urgent, but that also depends on the person or circumstance. I know many people and companies where the phone is completely ineffective — either people don’t answer or calls go right into voicemail and are never returned. And if I tried, I could probably come up with ten more reasons why the phone doesn’t work for another 12 Most post.
@momof3and3 Yes, that is true — I was referring to those who were in the loop on the first email and should be kept abreast of things as they progress. Discretion is necessary, obviously, but the problem is, if someone is left off because of a particular email, who’s to say the dialog won’t shift on future emails requiring their attention?
@jackoolair A phone call often ensues as part of the follow up process. But I think it’s misplaced responsibility that someone should be expected to try multiple means to track someone down when the polite thing to do would have been for the other person to simply respond. @pal2tech
@jackoolair I agree that it may very well be the wrong medium for those people — yet we happen to be talking about the medium of email here. I’m sure they would ace a post about the telephone or snail mail, however. @jenjarratt
@pal2tech I agree it depends on the occupation, yet I know few professions or businesses these days that can wait that long for a response without it being counterproductive to THEM.
@jenjarratt I disagree that it automatically means the communication was a failure — it is often because of sloppy reading and responding. I’ve seen short, bulleted lists go only partially-answered more times than I can count, and you can’t get much simpler and clearer than that. The way around it? Following up.
@jenjarratt “…many people don't actually read and grasp their email fully” — how is that not dumbass?