Saturday, May 30, 2009

Search over URL

I’ve been a member of Marketing Profs for years now. The amount of professional generosity never ceases to amaze me… nor does the stupidity but that is another post entirely. Len Kendall's post “that people are starting to view the Google search bar as their URL entry box” might be a little late out of the box but it should be enough to have you ignoring the rest of this post and typing your company's name in the search bar.

Glad you made it back. What did you see? Was it enough to make you realize that all your carefully planned branding efforts might very well be sharing space with some very unsavory company… and worse… your competition. What am I talking about? Search again and this time take notice of all of the other information in the search results. That's what consumers do.

Len Kendall references Josh Catone’s post at Read, Write, Web. This insightful post informs us about a possible new trend forming here in the States. Trends show that the way people search and the increased use of the mobile web, among others, should be enough for you to consider changing your web strategy. Kellogg’s went as far as purchasing the top sponsored search result for "Special K" on Yahoo! and Google to support their TV ads. Maybe the future is branded search results as Allen Stern of Center Networks points out.

Search over URL is here to stay. And even if you can't afford a national ad campaign or the purchase of top spots in search results, you do have the resources to provided your customers with a well-thought-out and well-designed web site. Evaluate the keywords and content on your site. Eliminate all the junk you think is necessary and simplify your message.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Crumpling as Identity

Sometimes the obvious just isn't so obvious until you bring in a professional… or two. Brand New has a post about theretooled Swanswell brand by Brand Guardians. They went on to hire johnson banks to handle the design chores. Swanswell is an agency that helps people with their drug and alcohol dependencies, said, ‘give me a brand my people and service users deserve’.

After the usual “brand strategy ‘thing’ (capabilities, competition, customers, vision and mission etc)” they had their ah-ha moment and started to explore the possibilities of using the “well” at the end of the company’s name. “Various typographic experiments followed, before the discovery that a piece of paper, crumpled at one end, could act as a suitable metaphor for someone's life smoothing itself out.”

Brand Guardian's Jonathan Mercer points out that he “never tire[s] of telling them brand development is less about invention, and more about archeology. We know the solution is ‘in there somewhere’, it just has to be revealed.” I always knew that, I guess I just hadn't seen it said so well.

The simplicity of this design is nothing short of brilliant.