Designer’s Review: Adobe® Kuler

By: > October 16th, 2013

Photo SwatchesColor is a huge inspiration for me. Fashion, nature, interior design, and pretty much anything else I may come across during the day often gives me ideas for color combinations. I can’t count the times I have passed some glorious spot of color and thought “Gee, I wish I could make a palette right now!” Lucky for me, I now have Adobe® Kuler in my life. With this great app, you can take a picture of something, and the app automatically creates a 5 color palette with pixel sampling.

The app is pretty simple to use, allowing you to freeze the image on your screen, and then, if you want to make alterations to your palette, you can simply drag the samplers around the image until you get the color you want. There is also a color wheel mode, which allows you to work with traditional color theory (complementary, analogous, compound, etc.) or in a custom mode to create your themes.

After making your theme, you can edit it, name it, and share it in a public forum at https://kuler.adobe.com. If you don’t have a smart phone, you can also use this website for creating themes. BEST of all, you can send your themes to yourself or a friend in eps format, which makes translating the palette to a project that much simpler.

I think this FREE app is an excellent tool for designers of all types, and well worth downloading for use on projects or, if you are a complete nerd like me, it’s a great way to waste time playing.

Happiness equals success

By: > October 1st, 2013

Among the numerous things that fill a normal week with work, family, exercise and the occassional game on my iPhone is the routine of catching a TED talk.

If you’re not familiar with TED. From the TED website –”TED is a nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. It started out in 1984 as a conference bringing together people from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, Design. ”

(more…)

11 ways to more effective emails in 2011

By: > January 3rd, 2011

This is a guest post from our friends at Inbox Orange

Based on lessons learned, knowledge of the industry and customer challenges, we’ve identified 11 best practices to “bulk” up your email marketing program for a successful 2011. You’re subscribers will be happy if you do.

Our suggestion on how to get started is to evaluate where you are currently then map out a process with a time line to improve your email marketing strategy. If you need an extra hand, we’re always here to help.

1. Get permission!

Map out each customer touch point to identify opportunities for organic list growth in a comfortable environment (store front, call center, sales representative, website, social media, viral campaigns, etc.). Compose a value statement of “why” they should subscribe and communicate that statement through each touch point.

2. Say hello.

Welcome your new subscriber to thank them, set expectations and enhance their experience. Most email service providers have built- in automation to streamline this task. Read More.

3. Mind your voice.

The tone or “voice” of all communication should reflect your corporate culture and your brand. I highly recommend the book “Delivering Happiness” to explore corporate culture, establish core values and create customer loyalty. This book is excellent and easy-to-read. I couldn’t put it down!

4. Listen.

Ask questions to get to know your subscriber to guide relevant communication. This includes frequency. Identify how often your subscriber would like to hear from you then honor that request. Read More.

5. Segment.

Take the information obtained above and segment your audience to send relevant content. Learn more.

6. Organize.

A marketing calendar and / or schedule not only makes your job easier but will keep fellow employees and vendors on task as well.

7. Set goals.

Set at least one goal for the campaign with a clear call-to-action. Prior to send, double check that you met that goal.

8. Design.

Design goes beyond pretty pictures and performance-driven design will improve results. Learn More.
Outlook, Yahoo and Gmail have made a few changes that challenge email marketers. Learn More.
Incorporate social media into your email campaigns. Learn More.

9. Test.

Test, test and retest. Send a test to different email clients to make sure your campaign is rendering properly and your message is getting across.
Conduct and A/B Split Test prior to hitting send to enhance engagement. ExactTarget is launching a new feature in a few weeks to simplify this important task.

10. Measure results.

Data leads to great insight that will only improve your email marketing program. Listen to your customer. If you add value to their lives, positive results will follow.

11 Automate.

Work smarter.Use automation to enhance the customer experience. Automate to send relevant life cycle campaigns such as happy birthday, happy anniversary, customer service evaluations and reminders based off of purchase behavior. Tie automation into your CRM or POS and wow!

Relevancy Makes a Difference

By: > October 28th, 2010 > One comment

As a permission-based email marketing agency we follow the philosophy that Subscriber’s Rule:

  • Serve the individual.
  • Honor each individual’s unique preferences with regard to communication,
    content, frequency, and channel.
  • Deliver subscribers timely, relevant content that improves their lives.

In fact, Inbox Orange in partnership with our customer, Bluegrass Hospitality Group, received industry recognition last month for doing so with BHG Rewards.

Below are two examples of tracking data pulled from recent email newsletters; one within the B-to-B industry and one within B-to-C. The email campaign that offered relevant content based on profile data, purchase history or the relationship with the sender, tracked greater open and click-through results with substantially lower unsubscribes.

B_to_B_Relevancy

B_to_C_Relevancy

Becoming a one-to-one marketer takes time.  Simply asking your subscriber about their interest and frequency preference is a great start.  Being creative with contests or polls is another approach.  Utilizing features such as Smart Capture for Landing Pages or the survey tools incorporated within the email service provider we recommend, ExactTarget, offer a seamless approach to collecting data and storage.  Both the ExactTarget Core and Advanced accounts allow for 200 attributes (data fields) – that’s a minimum of 200 ways to segment your audience!

rel·e·van·cy = the relation of something
to the matter at hand.

Relevancy drives loyalty. Loyalty begins with trust.  Trust begins with creating an exceptional experience.  Maintaining trust involves listening to your audience.  Listening leads to growth and understanding.  Communicating with your audience through the preferred channel with the right message drives engagement and loyalty.

To explore how Inbox Orange can assist with data collection, segmentation, campaign development and analysis, please contact us at [email protected]

BHG and Inbox Orange Recognized.

By: > September 17th, 2010

The Bluegrass Hospitality Group (BHG) and Inbox Orange were recognized on screen Wednesday at the 2010 ExactTarget Connections Convention as a nominee for a Subscriber’s Rule Award. Best Buy took home the award but what a great honor to be in the same space!

Best Buy does an amazing job with sending relevant and targeted emails. If you are looking to follow a company that does it right, sign up to receive their email communication through Best Buy Reward Zone. Recently I purchased a new printer and within 24 hours I received a thank you email asking me if my questions were answered, directed me to the Geek Squad for assistance on set up and a link to a survey to evaluate customer service. Timely and relevant.

Best Buy is a proven leader in our industry and we’re proud to be a close contender!

Read our case study to learn more >