Project Launch: Kali The Baking Goddess

August 1, 2013

Launched the new site for Kali, a new brand launched by the team at Pastry Smart. Kali is a line of snack foods that will be sold exclusively through Whole Foods. The challenge here was to create a site for purposes of brand awareness with retail-centric product detail pages with consumer info.

Kali the Baking Goddess

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Filed under: Blog, Branding, Identity Design, Marketing, Photography, Social Media, User Experience, Web Development by SF

Berkshire-Hathaway’s Brilliant Website

November 2, 2012

This week I was looking for design inspiration for websites dealing with clients in the financial sector. After looking over dozens of examples of equity fund, online trading and real estate investment group sites, I encountered some good wireframe and design ideas that fit well with the model of my client.

Wanting to be thorough, I decided to finish the exercise with an overview of the top ten investment groups in America. I immediately struck pay dirt with this approach, visiting the website in the #1 position, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. – the largest investment group in the U.S. View this screenshot of their website with reverence and awe, for it stands alone as a monument to clean design and precision-targeted user experience.

After viewing the graphic of their home page or visiting their site, you may think I’m being sarcastic. But I swear I’m not. OK maybe a little, but not much. Because despite the fact that I make my living producing and designing websites and other collateral for online marketing, after pondering this site for some time I realized that I could not improve upon this website. Yes, I could make it look prettier. I could add functionality. I could re-platform it with a CMS. I could go to Getty Images and purchase stock photo assets featuring 20-something women in business suits standing in 30th floor office suites talking on their smartphones, and put those images into jQuery slideshows on the home page.

I could do all of the above and still not increase the functionality of their website of Berkshire Hathaway Incorporated one tiny bit, or add one dollar of value to their investment portfolio.

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Filed under: Branding, Marketing, Online Marketing, User Experience, User Interface, Web Content by SF

Survival of the Tech Titans

May 2, 2012

Shared a link to a Forbes article today called Here’s Why Google and Facebook Might Disappear in the Next 5 Years piece that details fundamental flaws that may keep today’s web giants from competing in a landscape dominated by mobile apps.

The article was a good read and makes some good points, but like a lot of tech journalism it focuses on trending, innovation, industry hindsight. Google, Amazon and Facebook might have trouble down the road but I doubt it will be due to inability to adapt to new paradigms. IMO if they have problems with adapting to a changing landscape it will be due more to corporate bloat than anything. When companies get too large, their swelling ranks of shareholders invariably demand growth — growth that can’t be satisfied by simply selling the modest product(s) that made the companies household names.

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Filed under: Blog, Digital, E-commerce, Facebook, Google, Interactive, iPad, iPhone, Mobile, Mobile Marketing, Online Marketing, Social Media, User Experience by SF

JP Morgan Chase Snubs Their own Investments – and Investors

July 1, 2010

Would you buy 14,000,000 shares in stock of a company you don’t believe in?

That’s apparently what JP Morgan Chase has done. Despite owning that amount of shares in the web browser Opera (approximately 14% of the company), they issued a release last week that warned their customers they would block customer access to Opera and Chrome for reasons of security/standards compliance.

JP Morgan Chase graphic

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Filed under: E-commerce, Google, Uncategorized, User Experience, Web Development by SF

iPad and Music Marketing

February 5, 2010

The first thought I had about Apple’s iPad after its gala unveiling last week was that it could be the target platform of choice for anyone in music marketing.

There’s nothing new about buying music on your mobile device, but a smart phone is really only handy for this purpose if you already know what you want. If you’re curious about checking out other artists you’ve heard about, or those recommended by your favorite music service, you need a bigger screen.

One of the nostalgic laments about being a music fanatic in the age of the mp3 is that we’ve lost the wonderful historical, educational and aesthetic context that vinyl and CD packaging brought to the experience. With the iPad, and the predictable tsunami of similar devices that will inevitably follow in its wake, there is an avenue to bring some of this back either as a sales enticement or as a higher level of product (and price point).

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Filed under: Apple, Blog, iPad, Mobile, Mobile Marketing, Music, Publishing, User Experience, User Interface, Video, Web Development by SF