The Power of Storytelling in Branding

Storytelling

The best writers, speakers, trainers, leaders, teachers tell stories.

A brand that is engaging is easier to remember and easier to process than others in the same category. Over time, it manages to establish a connection with potential customers, which directly contributes to a relevance in the market.

An emerging brand can evolve into a strong brand.

The most accessible tools for brands to become strong are words. Words create a story, and the story is what manages to capture the attention of any user. Stories portray emotion, and emotion attaches us to everything.

Story

To build your brand’s story, you have to answer two questions:

1.What is the purpose of your brands existence?

An excellent example of storytelling that can easily answer this question is represented by non-profit organizations (non-governmental organizations). In NGOs, we choose to invest our money and time without receiving a specific product or service in return.

They promote a cause, we become attached to that cause through emotion, and we choose to give them money.

If brands would address the communication process from an NGO perspective, helping the consumer first and selling second, they would all be more successful.

Storytelling

2. How does your brand differ from others?

The importance of a brand’s offer, whether it be a product or service, has diminished over time. On a constantly growing market, competition is unavoidable, and what makes the biggest difference is how a brand promotes the offer. Why does the brand choose to do what it does? What drives us to do what we do regarding the brand?

How to turn your story into a tool

To turn a story into an effective tool for your brand, it must be narrated in a transparent and authentic way. It must have a core belief (the moral of the story) and help the target audience reach the happy ending they hoped for.

The stronger the moral of the story is, the more significant of an impact it makes, the stronger the relationship between brand and consumer. However, the moral of the story can not be the same for all audiences. Brands need to understand this and create different approaches if they want to identify themselves with a larger audience of individuals.

Advertising. Storytelling. Engagement.

Storytelling

Every brand tries to create a connection with the audience to which it addresses, but this goal is not always met as expected. Most brands create user personas to help them better understand the kinds of people that usually buy from them. By doing this, you can also understand who isn’t buying from you, and develop strategies to reach those people.

Over 75% of emails received from companies are not open and over 99% of banners end up being ignored. The main objective of advertising is to attract long term attention. Another objective is to engage customers on a personal level. Make them feel at home with your brand, and develop a relationship that fortifies their decision in choosing you.

In advertising, the story is not just an entertainment tool, but the basis for changing a decision, attitude, or behavior. That’s why brands need to invest time building relationships to help them integrate the target audience into the brand story.

The conclusion

Storytelling is a key element in advertising. It’s not enough anymore to simply sell a product. You have to sell your story. You have to make these potential customers believe in what you believe. They have to understand why you do what you do, and the journey you took to get there. A story is more than a tool for a brand, but the brand itself.

The evolution of a brand involves all these elements, based on two fundamental concepts: creating a story and transmitting the narrative. They aim to establish a long-term connection with the target audience in order to build relationships, and generate not just customers, but loyal and happy customers.

Read More at The Power of Storytelling in Branding

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/the-power-of-storytelling-in-branding/

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly? 10 Features of a Good Logo

What is a logo? Basically, it is a symbol, a text, or a combination of the two that helps us identify a brand. The latter is not just a logo, it is the general way in which customers perceive you. This includes the way of communication, promotional materials, images, products or services, physical stores or online stores, and more.

Why is it important to have a logo? Representing the “face” of your business, it is necessary for the purpose of identifying, differentiating competition, constant communication and loyalty.

With that in mind, let’s talk about 10 of the biggest features that should go into a logo:

Represents the niche and the target audience

The features of a logo must depend on the niche and the target audience accordingly. That’s why a marketing brief is the basis for creating a good logo.

For a specific example, let’s use a heavy metal band’s logo. The band’s logo might look ugly and grotesque to some, but it’s exactly what it should be for their target audience.

It is adaptable

Good Logo

A good logo can be easily used in the online environment, embroidery, huge banners, small labels, business cards, bottles, you name it. Keep in mind that you need a logo in vector format, not just .png or .jpg, because this format offers scalability. Do not forget to always ask the graphic designer.

In this regard, you really should consider working with a graphic designer. Remember, your logo is the face of your company. It’s the thing that almost every customer sees before they even know what you do as a company. Spend the extra time and money to get it right the first time, and avoid having to spend more time and money in the future.

It differentiates you from the competition

Good Logo

First, to differentiate yourself, you have to know your competition. Considering the multitude of existing business and logos, it is extremely important to assume your own identity and not to copy it from others. Of course, in this case, differentiation must target the niche and the target audience. To continue with the previous example, heavy metal logos do not fit a law firm.

It is timeless

Good Logo

Trends come and go, but your logo does not have to be based on time preferences, but it has to pass the test of time. Of course, many businesses change their logos through rebranding campaigns, because they have changed their values ​​or just because they originally made a trendy logo.

A good example of a timeless logo is the Coca-Cola logo. Since its creation in 1887, it’s kept roughly the same design. It’s easily recognized, and it stays up-to-date.

It’s memorable

The memorable character of a logo can be provided by simplicity, uniqueness, color, hidden elements or many other features. The customer will choose a brand they know and trust, and ultimately become faithful to your brand.

Leave a lasting impression, and gain a lasting customer.

It’s read easily

Good Logo

Handwriting fonts can be beautiful for a particular audience, but they are often hard to read and therefore hard to remember and perceive. If a font is not readable at a comfortable size, how does it look on a business card or a mobile site?

Again, keep it simple and clean, and you’ll avoid this mistake.

It doesn’t describe the business

Good Logo

Just because you deal with car production does not mean that your car needs a car illustration. Of all existing car brands, none of them include the main subject of their business (except those that make toy cars).

Many graphic designers (or business owners) tend to make the logo descriptive. This might not be considered a mistake, but, more often than not, it comes off as a generic looking logo. It usually limits you to certain services, which can prevent the expansion of your business.

It’s smart

A visible concept is not a must, but it’s a plus . A logo that contains a surprise item or something that needs to be discovered generates interest (have you ever noticed the arrow in the FedEx logo?). But one element is more than enough. Many times, designers take this idea too far, and overcomplicate the logo.

Good Logo

Contains the appropriate fonts and colors

Fonts and colors are excellent forms of communication. For example, a handwritten font is more feminine and personal, usually unmatched in a corporate logo. Every color has its psychology, which is dependent on culture. In this sense, have you ever wondered why most corporations have the blue logo? The answer is simple: because blue inspires confidence and is a favorite color of both genders.

Good Logo

It’s not complicated

Too many fonts, colors, elements, symbols, or slogans can complicate the design. This leads to a hard-to-remember and unidentifiable logo.

The summary

Now you know what a logo is, why it is important to have one, and what  the characteristics that can fit it into the category of good ones are.

There are lots of examples of great logos out there. I’m sure you can think of a few right off the top of your head right now. But, for every good example of a logo, there’s at least one bad example. Avoid being one of those bad examples, and stick to these 10 features.

Read More at The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly? 10 Features of a Good Logo

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly-10-features-of-a-good-logo/

5 Mistakes You Are Not Allowed to Make on Your Website

website mistakes

Your website is your business card in the online environment. As a representative element for your business image, your website needs to look and behave impeccably in the online environment. This is a must if you want your site to bring you results, drive traffic, and ultimately increase conversion rates.

In a world where the number of websites is growing from day to day, only the most advanced and well-developed websites will manage to bring your business to another level. Sites that contain very few mistakes, if any at all.

In today’s article, we’re going to reveal 5 mistakes that you are simply not allowed to make in making your website – especially if you want it to bring you the desired results.

Not mobile friendly

Website Mistakes

If anyone were to compile a massive list of mistakes to avoid in regards to building a website in 2019, this would definitely be at the top. Everyone preaches this. A website that isn’t friendly to mobile users is 100% wasted potential.

Currently, over 7 out of 10 people are searching on Google with their mobile devices. In addition, Google made it clear a while ago that mobile adaptive sites will have advantages in terms of positioning in SERP. In other words, the adaptability of your website is becoming an extremely important SEO factor.

More and more people are making the switch to mobile browsing, so we can only expect mobile search percentages to go up from here. If you do not have a mobile and tablet-compatible website in 2019, it’s like opening a business and consciously closing the door in your nose for your clients in 7 out of 10 cases.

Unoptimized SEO content

web design

This is the second fatal mistake in 2019, and again, something that most people know by now. SEO content will always make the top of everyone’s list because the Google algorithm is always changing. It’s no small task to optimize your SEO content, but it’s a vital one.

Writing SEO optimized content means you adopt the text to Google’s requirements. For the most part, that’s pretty straight forward. However, the tricky part comes into play when you have to keep it SEO optimized and appeal to real people. You’re not just creating content to make a robot happy, you have to keep the users happy, too. SEO in 2019 greatly relies on relevance – the content of your website should be 100% relevant to your target audience.

You have to find the balance. Find your brand voice and keep the Google robots in mind. If you don’t, this might be the first and last mistake you make on your website.

Slow loading time

Website Mistakes

This mistake is every bit as unforgiving as the first 2. People come to your website to get what they need and get out. If you hinder their convenience in any way, you might find yourself minus a customer.

There are a lot of factors that come into play regarding loading speeds. Most of them have to do with your content. Think of it this way: longer content = longer loading times. That’s why it’s so important to say what you need to say, and leave it at that.

Lots of people mistake detail with long-form content. While it’s true that Google favors longer content, it doesn’t always mean your users will. Again, the key here is to keep it short and sweet for the sake of the real people but to keep those keywords in mind for Google.

Bad CTA elements

A website that does not present the information in an attractive way, influencing the sales by Call-to-Action elements, will be a website that is not successful in the online environment. If the essential information and the call to action are not VISIBLE on the site, in a way that will invite the visitor to act, the site will not help you accomplish anything. So basically, it’s useless.

It is recommended that each page uses buttons, icons, and links that will lead to the contact forms or the offer request pages. Each page of the website must push the user one step closer to the final stage: the sale.

Nowadays, everything happens at the speed of lightning. No one has time to read hot air on your website. The world searches for fast, easy-to-understand and understandable information. Take that away, you take your customers away, too.

Lack of updates

In 2019 everyone expects your website to be “up to date” with all the trends and information. If you provide outdated information (even information about your products), you’ve lost the race with competing sites.

Your site needs to be updated and provide real-time information about you, about your products and about your business in general. Also, functionality is very important.

Sites with dead links or pages leading to errors – lack of content or missing pages are among the most common errors that turn users away from your website. Keep your site up-to-date. All pages should follow this rule and all information needs to be up to date.

Your website will always be a work-in-progress

Website Mistakes

Don’t let this header discourage you. A proper website, no matter the content or who owns it, will always need improvements and updates. There will always be something new to do, optimize, or add.

These are the 5 biggest mistakes people make when creating a new website in 2019, and they most likely always be mistakes that developers struggle with. The biggest takeaway from all these mistakes? Learn and adapt. If you see a mistake, fix it, and always be on the lookout for ways to improve.

Read More at 5 Mistakes You Are Not Allowed to Make on Your Website

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/5-mistakes-you-are-not-allowed-to-make-on-your-website/

10 Alternative Typefaces to the Ubiquitous Gotham

Gotham Alternatives

Gotham has become one of the most ubiquitous typographies of the 21st century. Its versatility and, undoubtedly, its good design makes it useable in many spaces. Even more, since it became the official typography of the campaign that led Obama to become president. However, in the typographic universe, there are hundreds and hundreds of typefaces to choose from. Since we live in a world that loves variety, here are 10 alternative typefaces to the Gotham.

1. Proxima Nova

Gotham Alternatives

Designed by Mark Simonson, Proxima Nova is perhaps one of the fonts that best presents itself as an alternative to the Gotham family. According to the author, this source “closes the gap between fonts such as Futura and Akzidenz Grotesk.” The result is a hybrid that combines modern proportions with a geometric appearance. It is a balanced and versatile source – the complete family includes 48 sources, eight pesos in three widths with their italics – the result of extensive work dating back to 1994. In recent years, Proxima Nova has become of the most popular web sources.

2. Montserrat

Gotham Alternatives

Montserrat was created by the designer Julieta Ulanovsky. He took inspiration from the architecture, the old posters, the luminous signs and the canopies of the neighborhood named after him in Buenos Aires. Ulanovsky’s intention was to rescue the beauty of urban typography from the first half of the 20th century. This inspiration taken from the local signs and architectural ques bring it closer to Gotham. Even so, the Montserrat forms are a little broader, giving a less solemn and more relaxed feeling that Gotham doesn’t provide. Montserrat was chosen to be among the 10 best fonts of Google Fonts in 2017.

3. Nexa

Gotham Alternatives

Directly from FontFabric comes Nexa, a sans serif font available in Light & Bold. This alternative to Gotham is possibly more expressive typography than some of the fonts that appear in this list. For example, the lowercase letter ‘g’ and the capital letters ‘J’ and ‘Q’ are far more expressive. In terms of its uses and applications, Nexa is perfect for branding and packaging projects. Nexa Light & Bold is freely available for download.

4. Sans Museo

Gotham Alternatives

Sans Museo coems directly from Exljbris foundry. This type of sans serif is robust, geometric, low contrast and highly readable; very suitable for use on any screen or for any text. This family of OpenType fonts is in all the languages ​​of the European Union and even in Esperanto. The Sans Museo package contains 10 fonts, 5 pesos, and their respective italics.

5. Pier Sans

Gotham Alternatives

According to Mathieu Desjardins, the designer of Pier Sans, it is a modern and geometric typeface, specially designed to be able to adapt to any size of text without losing legibility. This font, besides being a good alternative to Gotham typography, is quite useful for projects of all kinds, since it is able to cover the needs of any text.

6. Vision

Gotham Alternatives

Vision is a complete typographic package. It is elegant and offers very good readability, both on screen and in the text. It consists of 12 free sources available for commercial and non-commercial work. As an alternative to Gotham, it presents a more humanistic invoice, especially in its lowercase. It was born to be versatile, a clear and modern font with great readability in large and short texts. In addition, it has ligatures, alternative glyphs and OpenType features that provide flexibility and uniqueness wherever they are placed.

7. Avenir

Gotham Alternatives

Designed by Adrian Frutiger in 1988 and published by Linotype, Avenir is one of the best-known sans serif typefaces from the Swiss typographer. The word ‘Avenir’ comes from the French and means ‘future’. Frutiger wanted Avenir to convey a more organic interpretation of the geometric style. He wanted it to be more uniform for extensive texts, with details reminiscent of more traditional typefaces, such as ‘a’ and ‘t’ – two letters with a curl at the bottom, and letters like the ‘o’ that are not exact or perfect circles, but with optical correction. Avenir is not purely geometric. The vertical strokes are thicker than their horizontal ones, the ascending ones are shortened and the ‘o’ is not perfectly round, adjustments that help readability and give the typeface a more harmonious appearance.

8. Lato

Gotham Alternatives

Lato is the most popular font from Łukasz Dziedzic, a designer based in Warsaw. Designed in 2010, this free font contains more than 3,000 glyphs in 18 styles. It offers solutions to virtually everything a designer may need. Lato, which means ‘summer’ in Polish, is a semi-rounded sans serif that, like Gotham, achieves a convincing balance between what can be a serious and friendly conversation.

9. Foundry Sterling

Gotham Alternatives

Foundry Sterling is a functional and eloquent typographic family. It was born from the desire to create a modern sans serif with an essentially English flavor. It has been designed by paying special attention to the classical proportion and the purity of the forms, which has resulted in the creation of functional, beautiful and elegant typography. Like Gotham, Foundry Sterling has a wide range of weights that make it very versatile in its applications, whether for identity, editorial, signage or other uses.

10. Gothvetica

Gotham Alternatives

Its name says it all. Gothvetica is a hybrid between Gotham and Helvetica. This MarkStudio typographic exercise began as a question: How similar are Gotham and Helvetica? What would happen if they both merged? The result is this typographic mix, a kind of Frankenstein font, and we must admit that it works as alternative typography to Gotham and can give a solution to certain projects. Oh! and, by the way, it’s free.

Conclusion

Although Gotham is one of the most popular fonts on the market today, it doesn’t mean we all have to follow its trends. There are plenty of alternatives out there, and we shouldn’t limit ourselves. Try out one or all of the fonts above and let your creative spirit fly.

Read More at 10 Alternative Typefaces to the Ubiquitous Gotham

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/10-alternative-typefaces-to-the-ubiquitous-gotham/

Turkish Airlines Updated its Logo

Turkish Airlines

The national airline of Turkey, which flies to 122 countries around the world, has updated its branding hand in hand with the Imagination studio.

Airlines always look for the best design that defines their identity. Therefore, Turkish Airlines has renewed its image, refining its traditional bird symbol and adopting a new wave that seeks to reflect the seven continents of the world to which the company travels.

Turkish Airlines

The previous logo showed the name of the airline in bold, typography sans serif in blue on the left, with a red circle and an abstract image of a bird in the center on the right. According to the Turkish airline, the shape of a bird drawn on a line represents a “wild goose”. This has been chosen as his mascot, since geese are well known for traveling great distances.

Turkish Airlines

The new brand presents a refined version of the goose symbol encapsulated within the circle, which is now red in color. The goose has been adjusted, now placed at a more diagonal angle, and is smaller in size, as it does not reach the edges of the circle.

Turkish Airlines

The logo is now configured in white within the circumference, created with a palette of colors in red and white. The typography has been modified and now has rounded corners in some characters. The logo is accompanied by a wave chart composed of seven horizontal lines, which seek to refer to the seven continents of the world, in an attempt to transmit the airline as an international entity.

The logo is located at the point of convergence, or center of the graphic line, which appears to represent “Turkish Airlines at the center of global travel,” the design consultancy mentioned.

Red and white are the main corporate colors of the brand, and have been used to represent the economy class, while a combination of golden and black rose is the main palette of the business class, to create a more “premium” feeling and “distinctive” look.

In addition, a new set of graphic icons has been designed, representing different elements of the airline’s experience, including hold baggage and items that are restricted by airport security.

The presentation of this new image coincides with the launch of the new Istanbul airport in Turkey, which will become the new center of Turkish Airlines operations and which will open its doors in April. The current hubs of the airline are Istanbul-Atatürk Airport and Ankara Airport.

The new brand has begun to expand, starting with signage, positioning, billing counters and other interior points of contact at the new airport.

This new rebranding will continue to be implemented over the next few months in interior aircraft designs, digital platforms that include the website and social networks, printed advertising materials and merchandise.

Imagination has also created a set of guidelines for Turkish Airlines, so that the company can continue to produce branded products in the future, such as signs, shoes and blankets in the cabin.

Read More at Turkish Airlines Updated its Logo

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/turkish-airlines-updated-its-logo/

The hottest UX and UI tools you’ll want to check out today

          Companies
used to place the highest priority on delivering bug-free software. There’s
nothing wrong with that of course. Bug-free software is a worthy goal. The
problem is, these same companies neglected to address usability issues. They
did that until their software solutions had been placed into service. At this
time, resolving usability issues often involved significant expense.

Usability issues tend to be more common than
many people realize. The good news is, they can be addressed during the design
phase. Then, they can usually be dealt with at minimal time and expense.

The tools and resources presented here are
precisely what you want to have access to. This is if your intent is to address
usability issues or concerns during the design phase.

Let’s start with:

1. Mason

Mason provides teams with a visual front-end
feature-building environment in which they can collaborate to create app and
other digital product features and seamlessly integrate those features into the
codebases of existing products.

Normally, it can be fairly expensive to make a
change or add a feature to an existing product, even if either is relatively
minor. With Mason, neither software product teams or clients are forced to wait
for the next deployment cycle to make a change or add a feature. Mason makes
software maintenance far easier, faster, and less expensive than what people
have become accustomed to.

Since Mason takes care of the coding,
developers can focus on larger and more complex tasks and leave it up to the
designers to create and deploy robust and secure software features and fixes.

Mason is easy to work with, transparent, and
completely non-intrusive, it’s there only when you trigger it, so it won’t wear
your websites or apps down.

2. UXPin

          UXPin
is a powerful cloud-based prototyping tool you can use from the very beginning
of the design phase until it’s time to hand the design over to the developers.
Design, prototype, collaborate all in one place. It’s one of the few design
tools that allows you to design from coded components.  Its use is based on the principle that one of
the best ways to create a top-tier UX is by using an iterative wireframing and
prototyping approach.

UXPin enables teams to share design information
as needed, including with their clients and other project stakeholders.

This design information can take the form of
concept-proving wireframes, low-fidelity prototypes to share with others for
feedback, and interactive high-fidelity prototypes that have the look and feel
of the real thing for user testing and design approval and buy off.

UXPin is designed to help you significantly
reduce design, development, and product time, while ensuring consistency of
design from one software solution to the next.

3. Interfacer

          Interfacer
not only offers a practical solution to your need for a comprehensive library
of design aids, but it’s a fun resource to have at your fingertips as well.
This resource “library” is actually a collection of mini-libraries that feature
hundreds of Google fonts, icons, UI Design kits, images, and templates for
websites, landing pages, special pages and more.

Best of all, the quality throughout is
excellent and everything is free for commercial use.

4. Webflow

There’s no need to invest in separate tools or platforms to manage your website design, development, and hosting needs. Webflow gives you a code-free, all-in-one solution that includes building a client-friendly CMS for each website or app you create — not to mention completely custom layouts and interactions. Designed for creative web designers, Webflow is easy to work with whether you’re a long-time designer or a beginner.

Why should you concern yourself over UX design and these tools?

A
friendly UX encourages visitors to see their journey to its end

We’ve all been there. Looking for a particular
product or service on the web and finding several good websites.

They promote the same products or services, but
one stands out from the others. It was quick and easy to find what we were
looking for. The experience was in fact so enjoyable that we decided to
bookmark the website.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the website or app
in question belonged to you?

A
compelling UX design can increase loyalty to your brand

The ability to provide a good user experience
is key to the success of your business. It helps to build trust in your brand,
your product line, or your service. The UX you design can also help to
establish longstanding customer relationships. Seamless and enjoyable
interactions that encourage customer participation should be your goal.

Great
UX designs can encourage word of mouth referrals to new customers

Word of mouth has always been an effective way
to generate new business, and it’s no different in the digital world. People
like to share pleasant experiences. Provide a good online experience to your
users and they’ll want to tell the world about it.

Make the buying process a smooth and pleasant
one for your users. An opportunity will arise to recommend someone to friends
over social media. Whose business will that be? Yours?

Conclusion

The four UX and UI tools and resources
described above have several things in common. If you make a choice, it most
likely be one that best addresses your particular needs.

These UX/UI tools are fast, efficient, and
effective. The collection of design aid mini-libraries should help you. You can
steer clear having to reinvent the wheel. 
You can also avoid extensive searches for special fonts, icons, or UI
kits.

Read More at The hottest UX and UI tools you’ll want to check out today

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/the-hottest-ux-and-ui-tools-youll-want-to-check-out-today/

The Art of Copywriting: How to Write Better Captions that Get Engagement

What you’re trying to do, when you tell a story, is to write about an event in your life that made you feel some particular way. And what you’re trying to do, when you tell a story, is to get the audience to have that same feeling. – Pete Docter

While we don’t typically associate the art of copywriting with social media captions, the two are deeply intertwined.

A really good caption informs us about the things we cannot immediately see and encourages us to look at an image or video more closely.

From specific writing techniques to the psychology behind bringing your stories and captions to life, you’ll leave today’s episode with several new copywriting tactics and strategies to try.

The Art of Copywriting: How to Write Better Captions that Get Engagement

What follows is a detailed summary of the episode transcript. Feel free to jump around and explore the art of copywriting in this week’s Science of Social Media:

Let’s dive in!

A brief overview of storytelling

Stories don’t always look like what you might find in a  Jane Austin novel or in The New York Times.

The Story Spine

The Story Spine by Pixar

Today on social media, stories come in the form of captions, videos, photos, and text. Or as we see most often, a caption plus a video or a photo.

The caption could be multiple lines or it could be one sentence or even one word. The most important part, no matter the length of the caption, is that you’re trying to get the audience to feel something.

One way you can do this is to pull apart the stories you like. Self knowledge and awareness are at the the root of all great storytelling.

Before posting to social media ask critical questions like:

  • What will my audience think?
  • What will my audience feel?
  • How will they react to this content?
  • Will they find it entertaining, or is it just entertaining to me?

The ability to identify with audiences and post content that reflects those feelings and beliefs is one of the most underrated skills of today’s top social media managers.

Factors that make for great captions

One of the first steps in relating to our audience on a deeper level and increasing engagement on social media is simply writing better captions.

First, let’s define what a social media caption is:

A caption in its simplest form is the the title of an image or video. A full caption takes the form of descriptive text, usually a few words or sentences.

How to Write Captions

A really good caption informs us about the things we cannot immediately see and encourages us to look at the image or video more closely.

There relationship is mutually beneficial and there is dependence between a well written caption and the content.

The caption can bring the content to life by providing context and meaning. It is also the link between the article/story/text and the image.

A good caption is a piece of writing that should be concise, accurate, informative and as carefully crafted as the image itself.

For marketers it’s absolutely vital to get the caption right. A great caption can help sell an image or video and equally, a bad caption can make people scroll right past it.

Above all keep it simple and check that facts are 100 percent accurate.

Principles of effective copywriting

Now that we have a more specific definition of what a caption is and what it’s not, let’s discuss about how to improve your captions.

Simpler, shorter copywriting

First and foremost, it’s the more often than not, simpler, shorter captions will generate the most engagement.

Examining the world’s largest brand accounts like Nike, 9Gag, Chanel, or Tasty, their visuals are stunning, but they’re captions are equally as captivating.

If you find that you tend to write longer captions, practice editing them down so that you get your point across in the fewest words possible.

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Watch till the end! 60 seconds isn’t quite the best format for this, but it’s still fun to watch! What’s the most satisfying part of this video to you?! . This is the process of taking a 3d animation and mapping it’s frames onto a circular grid of a curved surface 🤯 The question I get the most is “what software do you use?”. In this piece I used @maxonc4d to animate a 120 frame rotating cube. I then used @photoshop to convert the frames into individual images, which were each manually vector traced in @adobe Illustrator. I then used Illustrator to shrink each consecutive frame making the linear cube animation travel outwards from a center and slowly disappear. At this point I essentially have a flip book style animation, but you can see every page at the same time! Illustrator was then used to convert the flat design into a multi wedge based stencil where each wedge was slightly modified to fit into a curved surface. The stencils were exported as cad files and machine cut with a @silhouette.inc Cameo cutter. I’m using all of these tools out of the box with no plugins. Materials used are @lagunaclay 16 porcelain, sign vinyl which sticks incredibly well to @diamondcoretools sanded clay, and black engobe slip. The use of digital tools plays a large role in my work, but they will never remove the intense manual efforts that go into each and every piece. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the use of modern technology on ceramics! #pottery #potteryvideos #instapottery #potsinaction #clay #ceramics #motion #motiongraphics #motiondesign #graphicdesign #design #cube #illustrator #illusion #opticalillusion #zoetrope #porcelain #bowl #handmade #process #stencil #pattern #spiral #geometric #cinema4d #3danimation #adobeillustrator #adobephotoshop #photoshop

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“Writing is human but editing is divine.” – Stephen King

In other words, cut out the fluff and get right to the heart of the message.

One way to do this is to avoid using too many adverbs. Most adverbs, especially adverbs ending in -ly can be removed from your caption. For example:

  • A mountain isn’t incredibly pretty – it’s beautiful.
  • The shoes aren’t really expensive – they’re plush.
  • The donuts aren’t exceedingly delicious – they’re delectable.

Spend time finding the right words to avoid using adverbs as crutches.

Flesch-Kincaid Index

The other aspect of simpler, shorter captions is the simpler part. I think it’s fun to think about this in terms of the Flesch-Kincaid Index, which is a test to rate how difficult a piece of writing would be to comprehend.

Three factors determine the test’s score: total sentences, total words, and total syllables.

Contently wrote a great article back in 2015 that looked at some of the most famous novels throughout history and what their Flesch-Kincaid Index levels are.

What they found was that legendary novels from authors like Cormac McCarthy, Jane Austin, Tim Ferris, J.K. Rowling, Hemingway, and countless others are at a 7th to 8th grade reading level.

Flesch-Kincaid Index

In fact, 75 percent of U.S. adults read just above a 5th grade reading level and 50 percent of U.S. adults read at an 8th grade reading level. Only about 12 percent of U.S. adults read at a 12th grade level or higher.

Quick tips for copywriting and readability:

  1. Use short words whenever possible.
  2. State your thoughts as simply as you can.
  3. Keep your sentences short. How short? Real short!

Narrative Urgency

Narrative urgency means that every sentence must serve a purpose.

Your first sentence must make the reader want to read the second.

The second sentence must propel the reader to the third. So forth and so on until the very end. If a sentence doesn’t move the narrative forward—if it doesn’t make the writing more urgent—then it must be cut, no matter how clever or precious it seems.

This is also a good tip for those that have found success with longer captions.

While shorter captions tend to perform the best on social, there are definitely brands that have built a brand by telling stories with their captions.

Facts and figures

When in doubt, start with science!

Share facts, figures, data, and statistics to lure your audience in. Using facts and data help take your ideas from abstract to concrete.

Copywriters have been using this technique for ages. They know they must make their copy believable, and instead of fighting with rational ideas, they simply show facts and numbers.

At Buffer, simply using numbers has been shown to increase downloads and traffic. Some of our most popular podcast episodes are ones that include a concrete number or the words “original research” in the title.

Data makes a huge difference and can be utilized in so many creative ways.

3 top copywriting tips to improve results

1. Punctuation. Is. Pace.

To add variety and cadence to your writing, play around with different punctuation: periods, commas, dashes, colons, semicolons. Short sentences communicate tension. Longer run-on sentences, on the other hand, help establish a frantic, hurried rhythm.

2. Expand your vocabulary to make your writing more precise

As the old saying goes, there’s no need to use a ten-dollar word when a ten-cent word will suffice. But having more tools in your toolbox will allow you to select the most appropriate tool for the job.

3. Don’t waste the reader’s time

Their time and attention are two of their most precious resources. We don’t want to force a reader to spend three minutes reading something that we could’ve and should’ve communicated in 30 seconds. If you want to earn your reader’s trust, don’t waste their time.

Summing up what makes a really good caption:

Put simply, a good caption is one that provides context, adds personality, and inspires your followers to take action in the shortest time possible.

How to say hello to us

We would all love to say hello to you on social media – especially Twitter!

Thanks for listening! Feel free to connect with our team at Buffer on TwitterBuffer on Facebook, our Podcast homepage, or with the hashtag #bufferpodcast.

Enjoy the show? It’d mean the world to us if you’d be up for giving us a rating and review on iTunes!

About The Science of Social Media podcast

The Science of Social Media is your weekly sandbox for social media stories, insights, experimentation, and inspiration. Every Monday (and sometimes more) we share the most cutting-edge social media marketing tactics from brands and influencers in every industry. If you’re a social media team of one, business owner, marketer, or someone simply interested in social media marketing, you’re sure to find something useful in each and every episode.  It’s our hope that you’ll join our 27,000+ weekly iTunes listeners and rock your social media channels as a result!

The Science of Social Media is proudly made by the Buffer team. Feel free to get in touch with us for any thoughts, ideas, or feedback.

from Resources https://buffer.com/resources/the-art-of-copywriting

Why you should care about public computers disappearing from libraries


While I was growing up, a weekend wasn’t complete without a trip to the library. With my allowance jingling in my pocket, I could rent a VHS or CD for just a few coins. And, of course, books were free (provided you returned them on time, which I seldom did). But now, in a world with Netflix and Amazon Kindle, libraries have lost their shine. For me, it’s nostalgia, but for millions of low-income people, they serve as an essential connection to the digital world. Public libraries allow them to access worlds of knowledge, and crucially, government services that have…

This story continues at The Next Web

from UK – The Next Web https://thenextweb.com/uk/2019/03/18/why-you-should-care-about-public-computers-disappearing-from-libraries/

How many of these website building tools could make your work easier?

Website
builders are having a lot more fun these days. This is thanks to the new
technologies they’re able to tap. These technologies enable them to create
websites that are more attractive. They feature better performance and more
functionality and are flat-out easier to build.

It hasn’t always been this way.
Website builders have been on the market for quite a few years.  Today, we have visual front-end website builders.
These tools are more powerful and flexible than ever and more user-friendly to
boot.

Web designers now have access to
tools that enable them to use their creativity to the max.

Here are 7 of the best modern
website and page building solutions for your 2019 projects.

Starting with –

1. Elementor

Elementor is the #1 website builder for WordPress. With more than 2 million installs worldwide, Elementor has proven to be extremely popular among web designers in the US, the UK, and Europe.

Why is Elementor so popular? Because it enables you to work in the most efficient way possible. Everything is WYSWYG, and every element is customizable. This means that if you can imagine it, you can create it.

You no longer have to struggle with theme limitations or constraints. Since you can work your magic from the frontend design panel, you can do all your designing without a single line of code. Elementor offers a powerful array of tools to help you build your site such as Theme Builder, WooCommerce Builder, and Pop-up Builder. To make a truly tailor-made look, harness the versatile functionality from the Header & Footer Builder, parallax & animation, dynamic content, sticky headers, to the countdown timer, star ratings & reviews – you name it.

So if you’re looking for a website builder that allows you to design, develop, and market simultaneously, and one you can master quickly, Elementor is for you and it’s an absolute steal.

2. Mobirise Website Builder

          One reason for giving
Mobirise a try is because it’s free; for both personal and commercial use with
no strings attached. That’s all well and good of course, but there are plenty
of other reasons as well; like the fact that this is an offline builder.

Being offline means you won’t be tied down to a specific platform, you
have total control over what you can do with this website builder, and also
with your site, and you can host your site anywhere. Since Mobirise is
Bootstrap 4 or Google AMP-based, your site is guaranteed to feature crazy-fast
page loading and be 100% mobile friendly.

Mobirise is also a drag and drop builder. It’s easy to learn and use, and
you can forget about coding because it won’t be necessary. A host of useful
design aids come with the package, including trendy building blocks and
templates, icons, Google fonts, and a half-million free images.

3. Portfoliobox

          Portfoliobox
is another website builder that offers the advantages of not being theme-based.
You’ll find it flexible and easy to use, it doesn’t require coding, and a
worldwide user base of over 1 million attests to its popularity.

Portfoliobox offers three plans: a
Free Plan, a Pro Plan, and a Student Plan; each designed to enable you to
create a modern and unique website featuring a stunning portfolio in a few
hours.

The Free plan offers hosting of 10
pages, 10 products, and 30 images. With the Pro plan, you get unlimited hosting
of pages, products, and blog posts together with hosting of 1,000 images,
custom CSS/JS, Google Analytics, and a personalized domain.

Those who qualify for a free
Student plan get everything the Pro plan offers except the personalized domain.
All three plans provide the complete set of Portfoliobox design templates.

4. Webflow

          The
ability to design, build, and launch websites made easy pretty much sums up
Webflow’s capabilities. The responsive web design platform translates your
design decisions into clean, semantic code for you. And it’s not just for
static sites, as you can build a fully custom and client-friendly content
management system (CMS) for every site that needs it.

You can use Webflow to build
ecommerce solutions, create prototypes, and add delightful interactions and
animations, all without coding.   

5.
WP Page Builder

WP
Page Builder is another design, build, and launch website-building tool option.
Everything is drag and drop with this real-time, front-end page builder so
there’s no need for coding, plus it’s compatible with any theme you happen to
be using.

The pages you create with the
flexible and simple-to-use WP Page Builder will always be 100% responsive and
mobile friendly.

6. 8b Website Builder

          This
brand-new (January 2019 launch) website builder is futuristic in its design,
it’s amazingly simple to work with, and you can use it with equal ease in your
home on your desktop, or when on the go on your mobile device.

Since the 8b website builder is
Google Amp-based, your sites will be crazy-fast and 100% mobile friendly.

It’s also free during this initial
launch period.

7. Quix – Joomla Page Builder

          Quix
– the first ever Joomla page builder that provides real-time SEO analysis of
your pages, SVG support and provides image optimization for rapid page loading.
This visual page builder allows you to develop your site at fastest pace and
create pages, forms, headers-footers, and themes.

Other page builders in the market
allow you to do only what a page builder meant to do. But Quix provides far
beyond than that by understanding user needs.

              
3 Key Tips for Successful Website Designing and Building

1
– Make your site mobile responsive

This was once a suggested option,
but today it is not anymore. There are more than 62% of shoppers making
purchases over their cellphones. Over 90% using smartphones to compare prices
and check out product reviews.

2
– Place your contact information where it’s easy to find, e.g., above the fold

People will want to contact your
business or sales team. Thus, you should put your contact information where
it’s easy to locate. If you’re using social media, putting links at the header
or footer serves the same purpose.

3
– Respect the need for speed

The typical busy shopper has
little patience with a website page that’s slow. 4 in 5 won’t tolerate
slow-loading sites and many of them will simply search for a competitor’s site.
Nearly 9 in 10 will seriously think about looking elsewhere if a site is not
behaving well.

Keep your site running smoothly by
optimizing videos and images for quick downloads. Make sure you’re using a host
that can easily manage your site’s bandwidth demands.

Conclusion

Finding a website builder that
will best fit your needs can be a challenge. Only because the marketplace is
saturated with them. The challenge can be especially great for beginning web
designers. They may not always know what to look for.

The intent of this article is to narrow
the search to a select few. Thereby, make it easy for you to find a
website-building tool that’s efficient, flexible, and a pleasure to use.

Read More at How many of these website building tools could make your work easier?

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/how-many-of-these-website-building-tools-could-make-your-work-easier%ef%bb%bf/

If the UK holds a second Brexit referendum, can it protect it from trolls and astroturfers?


March 29, the day upon which the UK will leave the European Union, feels nail-bitingly close. Adding to the anxiety is that with the twice-fold rejection of Theresa May’s withdrawal deal, the UK is heading in one of two directions: the first is a chaotic no-deal Brexit, and the second is a second referendum, which would put the terms of the UK’s departure to a public vote. The first Brexit referendum was tainted by vast (and, some might say, criminal) electoral impropriety by elements in the Leave campaign. I won’t rehash the finer details here. If you’ve been closely following…

This story continues at The Next Web

from UK – The Next Web https://thenextweb.com/uk/2019/03/14/if-the-uk-holds-a-second-brexit-referendum-can-it-protect-it-from-trolls-and-astroturfers/