Shadowbend Studios’ Traditional Annual Holiday “Gift” :)

Shadowbend Studios’ Traditional Annual Holiday “Gift” :)

Hello friends of the studio!
Well, it’s that time again!  This has been an annual holiday tradition for the past 12 years and those of you who have followed my blog posts and social media posts know what’s coming.  For those of you who may be new to my postings… I’ll apologize ahead of time 🙂  I have a quirky, whimsical and somewhat dark sense of humor at times.  It helps with creativity and design but, as I mentioned in the original post 12 years ago…

“This is one of those things that defines a person’s character to others. 🙂  Either you “get” the humor or you will come away, head askew with a “tsk tsk” look on your face, wondering where my parents went wrong.

And so, without further ado, here is Shadowbend Studios’ annual holiday “gift”…

Please feel free to let us know how you like the video in the comments section!  And, don’t hold it against us, we’re just made that way 🙂

Take care and happy holidays!
Skip & Sandy

Happy Thanksgiving From Shadowbend Studios

Happy Thanksgiving From Shadowbend Studios

Good morning Clients and Friends of Shadowbend Studios.

Yes, I know it’s Thanksgiving morning.  Yes, I know I shouldn’t be working.

However!  I’m so very thankful and grateful for all of the upcoming changes happening here at the studio that I just wanted to take to my blog before I start my holiday and let you all know that I am extraordinarily thankful to have such an amazing tribe of past clients, existing clients and friends!  It makes stepping into the studio every morning that much better!

So, from all of us here at Shadowbend Studios, we would like to wish all of you a very joyous Thanksgiving filled with contentment, happiness, family and joy.

See you tomorrow for a big surprise! 🙂

Take care,
Skip

Shadowbend Studios’ Client Showcase

Shadowbend Studios Weekly Client Showcase…

Web Design Development Client Showcase

“A PERFECT PLACE”

I have known Wyletta over at “A Perfect Place” for almost 5 years now I have have to say I’ve never seen her without a smile on her face or a lovely “Hi Darlin'” greeting.  Wyletta has been a joy to work with and I am very happy to be able to have the opportunity to share her website with a greater audience.

From the “A Perfect Place” home page:
“Wyletta’s A Perfect Place is Danville’s most soothing spot for massage & bodywork services. Wyletta offers an array of modalities which will send you on an hour’s “vacation”, soothe the soul and ease your stress.

“An Individualized Experience”

By focusing on each person, she sees more than just stress and muscles. Wyletta makes it a point to get to know you so she can give you exactly what you really need and expect from each visit. Wyletta has a variety of techniques and skills to choose from that will improve your quality of life.

Visit Wyletta in Danville, California, for the finest in relaxation massage or pain relief bodywork.”

http://www.aperfectplaceforyou.net/index.html

Four Online Tips for Offline Companies

webdesign_best_practicesWe live in an age when many companies have an online-only presence. “But for most enterprises, a website serves a slightly different purpose—augmenting an already well-established business that conducts the lion’s share of its merchandising offline,” writes Bill Post at MarketingProfs. These brick-and-mortar companies often struggle to adapt their messaging for an online audience, and their sometimes-clumsy web presence might actually hinder the image they want to project.

To avoid that fate, Post has this advice:

1. Maintain a consistent look and feel. “When customers look at your website,” he notes, “it should be crystal clear to them that they are ‘entering’ the online establishment of [a business with which] they are already at least somewhat familiar.” In other words, use the same logos, fonts, colors and lingo that they encounter in your store.

2. Make clear what you provide. Don’t take for granted that an online visitor will instantly understand what your company does—instead, assume they’ve never heard of you. Describe your business, list your top products and services and provide links to in-depth descriptions, an FAQ page and a page with contact information.

3. Show visitors the faces behind your URL. “Let your customers know all about your team, your staff, your management, and even your pets,” he suggests. “Don’t be afraid to include pictures.”

4. Don’t let your website get stale. If your homepage still trumpets an event or sale from 2010, a visitor will know she has just entered an online ghost town. So keep your site—both content and technology—up-to-date.

Build online business for your offline company by making your website an obvious extension of your brand.

Source: MarketingProfs enewsletter.

Three Rules for Ideation Suceess

Brainstorming TipsHow often do you gather your team for a day of brainstorming? Jeff Hirsch calls these freewheeling powwows “ideation sessions,” and they might just produce an idea that leads to your company’s next great feature, product or service. “You’re in the moment, sparks are flying, your brain’s going a mile a minute,” he notes at MarketingProfs. “The friendly competition from a diverse range of bright, talented colleagues stimulates original ideas that you never thought you could have.”

If you want to get the most from an ideation session, Hirsch recommends rules like these:

  • Jump right in. Lengthy preambles and presentations will kill the energetic buzz you’ve stoked with a buffet table of caffeine and carbs. “Say hello, state the target problem in one sentence, and then start with a crazy creative exercise,” he says.
  • Bring in a few ringers. Hirsch likes to recruit creative non-marketers—e.g. actors, musicians, writers and artists—who keep the conversation going during natural lulls. “They might not know ‘the business,'” he allows, “but they do understand, intuitively, how to communicate and connect with people.” The outside perspective can also challenge your company’s usual way of thinking.
  • Give concepts the benefit of the doubt. Some ideas might grow on you; some might lose their appeal in the light of day. “So if there’s even just an inkling of something you like about an idea, keep it around for a while,” he suggests.

The best ideas happen when you create a conducive brainstorming environment and give them a chance to develop.

Source: MarketingProfs email newsletter.

Five Tips for Creating Emails That Subscribers Want to Share

Email Customers Want To ShareWhen email subscribers share and discuss your content with friends and social networks, they start to sound like insiders. “Others will want to be insiders, too,” says Stephanie Miller at MarketingProfs’ Daily Fix blog. As a result, your list will grow—and so will your reach. “Customer-instigated sharing acts as a force multiplier that can significantly ratchet up the effectiveness of an email marketing campaign,” she explains.

So how do you optimize an email campaign for social sharing? Miller offers advice like this:

Identify which social media channels produce the most conversions. You’ll likely find most of your customers clustered in three or four services and networks; focus your efforts there.

Cozy up to influential brand advocates. They already like your product or service; heighten their enthusiasm with special treatment that acknowledges their status.

Learn from the offers that go viral. These days, consumers “expect and share only the most daring of offers,” Miller notes. Pay attention to the traits that seem to seize their interest.

Make sharing and registration easy. Remove any obstacles that prevent a subscriber from sharing your content and discouraging friends from signing up for your email campaigns.

Play by the rules. “Brands that overstep, spam and/or fail to disclose their intentions risk customer backlash,” says Miller. Bad behavior is a great way to generate negative social media buzz for your product or service—exactly what you don’t want.

Make it worth their WOM. Increase your reach and effectiveness by enhancing your email strategy with a social-sharing strategy.

Source: Marketing Profs Newsletter.

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