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Author: Emily Shaughnessy

5 Mistakes to Avoid When Rebranding Your Company

In our last blog post, we discussed the five essential steps companies should take when considering a rebranding. As promised, here are the five top mistakes to avoid when overhauling your brand.

Whether your rebranding is a result of a new acquisition or product to highlight, a misstep to correct, or is simply an image makeover to appeal to a new or changing customer base, there are many factors to consider. Your company size, resources, marketing assets, brand history, and audience will all impact how easy or challenging the process becomes.

Be on the lookout for these common errors and pitfalls so that you give your company and your new brand the best chance of success. 

  1. Don’t Think a Simple Logo Facelift Will Do The Trick 

    It’s common for companies to think that rebranding simply involves rewriting the mission statement, changing the logo and fonts, and calling it a day. While a design facelift is likely an important part of your rebranding strategy, successful rebranding involves pursuing a new strategy or goal, and it will extend to every corner of the business. It’s the difference between repainting the trim on the ship and actually turning the vessel around. Use your rebranding process as an opportunity to re-evaluate your company processes, goals and long-term direction.  

  2. Don’t Let Rebranding Become “Just Marketing’s Thing”
    While the marketing team will be doing much of the forward work on rebranding, and will likely be partnering with and executing the visions of upper management, it does nobody any favors to silo the rebranding effort to one particular department. Executive leadership should be making sure that departments aren’t working at cross purposes by involving the entire company in the rebranding process. 
  3. Don’t Forget To Talk To Employees
    Your employees may have some valuable insight into your company’s brand image and internal processes, so make sure you are bringing them into the decision making process and gathering their opinions and feedback. Understanding the culture and goals in your workplace is important to any rebranding, because problems in the office tend to bubble outward over time. The behavior and opinions of employees can be hard to change: a successful rebranding starts internally, using feedback from employees and executives to guide the most compelling narrative and strategies. If you can sell people inside, it’s easier to sell people on the outside. 
  4. Don’t Under-Communicate
    Presenting a brand strategy once or twice is not enough for the strategy to stick. This applies to both internal and external communications. To successfully launch a new brand image, you will need tested methods for gaining the buy-in of your employees, your customer base, and your target audience. This will involve consistent, concerted marketing efforts and a strong belief in your new brand.  
  5. Don’t Hire A Design Agency And Call It A Day
    There are plenty of designers who can craft a nice logo or a catchy tagline, but that’s not the same as having experience in brand strategy or business. Make sure your rebranding isn’t rushed and only skin deep. For a successful and sustainable rebranding, you should be partnering with a digital marketing agency that understands your company holistically and can make recommendations that incorporate your long-term business goals into your rebranding process. 
  6. Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

5 Essential Things To Do When Rebranding Your Company

Rebranding your company may sound intimidating, but it is nothing to be afraid of. Most of the major brands and industry leaders have overhauled their image at one point or another—from McDonald’s to Instagram to the Huffington Post.

Rebranding can happen for a number of reasons. Maybe the company needs to re-establish its place in the market, or reflect a major new acquisition. Maybe there’s new technology to show off, or new industry trends to follow. Maybe the old brand has received criticism for previous mistakes, and needs to cool off for a while.

The fact is that times change, style changes, and consumer expectations change. If your company has been around long enough, chances are it will need to evolve and adapt to the latest trends if it is going to be successful.

Undergoing a rebranding can be a time-intensive process depending on your company size, marketing assets and the resources available for the process. If it’s time for your brand get a makeover, here are five important steps you don’t want to miss.

1. Think Carefully About Why You’re Rebranding
What do you hope to gain? What are the risks of walking away from an established brand? Do you have other options that might be easier? Rebranding takes time and money to do well—and should not be entered into lightly. Make sure you do thorough research before initiating a rebranding, including internal research.

2. Get Buy-In From The Top
The CEO and executive leadership of your company should be directly involved from the beginning, and should ideally be leading the initiative and providing a strong vision for the project. They’re going to be involved at some point: it’s better for that to be sooner rather than later.

3. Talk With Customers and Stakeholders
Talk to customers—yours, and other people’s—as well as industry partners to work out your brand strategy. Ask about how people perceive your organization’s strengths and weaknesses. Find out what frustrates them, what they need, and what obstacles stop them from working with you. Such information will help you position strategy and messaging that will help you thrive in your market.

4. Overcommunicate
Hammer home the new brand strategy. Share it in ways that prompt people to directly experience it. Continually lay it out through regular workplace communication and training. Make it part of engagement activities. Make sure the message gets through.

5. Find The Right Partner

If you’re thinking about rebranding, you’ll need a partner who understands that brand strategy is a business strategy, and can show deep experience melding the two goals. Remember: you’ll need to make sure your business pursuits are aligned with your brand. Rebranding only to fall short of your new promises is worse than not rebranding at all. If you want to make sure you are hitting all your goals, you should look for a digital marketing agency that can not only help you change your brand image but your online presence and processes as well. Approaching the project from this holistic perspective will help ensure your rebranding is a triumphant success.

Stay tuned for Part Two: 5 Mistakes to Avoid When Rebranding Your Company

Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

Featured in Forbes: Sports Trainers, Monetize Your Knowledge

The digital revolution has allowed many companies and individuals to move past the format of trading their time and effort for money and into more passive and scalable income stream structures. 

The sports coaching industry is no different. This lucrative industry is expected to grow by $9 billion over the next four years, yet many trainers feel they have hit a financial plateau—whether they are self-employed or work for a sports training company. 

Last week, ATX Web Designs founder Daniel Griggs was featured in a Forbes article titled Sports Trainers: Monetize Your Knowledge and shared advice for coaches and trainers who are looking to scale their business and grow exponentially. The article explains some of the steps needed to create a digital platform that will turn knowledge and experience into profit.

These steps include:

​​1. Create content tiers. It is important to match your digital content to your audience. If you’re looking to monetize your knowledge for an online audience, you will need to identify audience segments and create tiers of content that apply to each one. For example, a college athlete needs a different approach than a mother of four young children.

  1. Progress your audience over time. In the sports training world, people like to see results. One of the advantages of a digital platform is the ability to showcase and adapt to your audiences’ growth. Incorporating various levels of training and utilizing online self-assessments or even live video assessments are ways to create measurable results. 
  1. Use existing platforms. There is no need to reinvent the wheel when it comes to creating and sharing online content. Platforms like Teachable, Podia and Thinkific are valuable tools for content creators and educators. You can even leverage social media platforms such as Instagram or TikTok to provide value for your audience and engage them in your marketing funnel. 

To read the full article,click here.

The Best Instagram Strategies for Small Businesses

Instagram is not only a free tool for small businesses, it is an extremely powerful one. There are 1.4 billion users on the photo-based social media platform who spend about 30 minutes every day scrolling through content. About 200 million Instagram users visit a business profile at least once a day, while 130 million click to learn more about businesses’ products and services. 

Running a small business requires the ability to multitask and wear many hats. While large corporations have teams of people researching, posting and responding on social media platforms, small companies don’t always have the time to prioritize engaging on apps like Instagram. Unfortunately, this means that many small businesses miss out on the significant opportunities Instagram offers for building brand awareness, generating new leads, and even making sales. 

If you are a small- or medium-sized-business owner and aren’t able to dedicate a lot of time to social media management, here are a few tips to help you keep up with the trends and get the most bang for your buck when you are able to post. 

  1. Optimize the link in bio. Make sure you include a link in your Instagram bio that takes users to an important page of your website. This should either be your homepage, a marketing landing page or your shop/services page.
  2. Schedule your posts. Save yourself time and energy by scheduling your posts in advance. This will also ensure you are able to post consistently and produce fresh content for your followers. You can schedule posts through free features like Business Suite or upgrade to a paid post scheduler like Buffer  or Hootsuite for a more streamlined experience.
  3. Interact with your followers. Consumers are more likely to purchase and promote brands that interact with them on social media. Set aside a day or two each week to respond to comments and questions so you can show your followers that you are active and engaged.
  4. Utilize videos and reels. Video “reels” and video posts are some of the most popular content on Instagram. Posting a video about your company, product, or services will give potential customers an experience of your brand that they can’t get through photos or text alone. Consumers are more likely to visualize themselves using a product or service when they see it in action via a video.
  5. Track your analytics. Instagram and other social media sites offer users data about posts, followers and engagement. By viewing your insights and analytics you will be able to gather useful information, such as which types of posts get the most engagement and when your followers are most active. This information will help you maximize your social media efforts.

Follow our blog for more digital marketing tips!

How to Write Better Product Descriptions

If you run a product-based business or e-commerce store, every piece of information on your website is critical—including your product descriptions. Many companies overlook their product descriptions, believing the product photos will speak for themselves. However, product descriptions can be invaluable for both SEO (bringing users to your site) and engagement (getting users to interact with or buy your products).

Here are 7 ways to create better product descriptions so that your audience is informed, engaged, and persuaded to purchase.

  1. Make it accurate. It may seem obvious, but making sure your product description preciscely matches the product itself will help improve sales and brand image. About 50% of consumers have returned a product because it didn’t match the description.
  2. Make it easy. Users want to gather as much information about your product in as little time as possible. Use short sentences, bullet points, and clearly delineated sections to help website visitors quickly scan the text while simultaneously being fully informed.
  3. Get creative. Generic, boring product descriptions inform the user, but don’t necessarily create more engagement. Try infusing your write-ups with a pop of personality, humor, or a conversational tone tailored to your specific target demographic.
  4. Benefits over features. Consumers are more persuaded by the benefits of a product than they are by the specifics of a product’s features. In your product descriptions, make sure you mention how this particular item will benefit someone’s life and solve their pain points.
  5. Describe an experience. Help your audience imagine what it would be like to hold, wear, or use your product with descriptive language that sparks their imagination. If you can picture yourself using a product, you are more likely to purchase it.
  6. Give examples or suggestions for use. By suggesting ways to incorporate your product into everyday life, you will provide your audience with clear examples of how useful and valuable your product is.
  7. Collect data. The best way to know if your product descriptions are working is to track your website traffic and conversions to determine how well your e-commerce page or product page is converting. If something isn’t performing well, it’s time to make some adjustments.

Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

3 Reasons You Should Be Marketing to Millennials

Millennials may be criticized for being entitled, self-focused, and spending $7 a day on expensive coffee, but they are also invaluable to your business—no matter what the industry. For all the flack they receive from older and more experienced generations, they have the power to make or break many brands.

Whether you offer a product or a service, are a large corporation or a small startup, here are three reasons your company should be focused on marketing to millennials:

  1. They represent the largest demographic
    Millennials are projected to overtake Baby Boomers as the largest living generation this year, according to The Pew Research Center. Although there is some variation in the definition of the millennial generation, it is generally understood to be adults in their early twenties to late thirties. As young immigrants join this demographic, the population is expected to rise to a peak of 76.2 million by 2036.
  2. They have enormous spending potential
    The average millennial earns about $56,000 before taxes each year and will likely spend upwards of $10 trillion within his or her lifetime. Collectively, this generation has upwards of $1.4 trillion in spending potential, making it the most powerful consumer demographic.
  3. They can market your product and help build credibility
    If your company appeals to millennials in the right way, you can not only win their business but can also take advantage of word-of-mouth marketing and referrals. Social media channels are a common platform for millennials to share reviews and advocate for their favorite brands. A Boston Consulting Group Study found that 39 percent of millennials post product reviews, 35 percent share product links on LinkedIn, and 32 percent follow brands on Twitter. Winning over a single millennial customer could also mean winning over a group of their peers.


Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

Featured in Forbes: The Best Website Strategies for Law Firms in 2021

Nearly 75% of individuals looking for an attorney begin their search online, 98% use a search engine and more than 70% visit a law firm’s website before making a decision, according to the National Law Review. That means it is critical for legal practices to have an effective digital strategy that will meet the demands of audiences in 2021.

In August, ATX Web Designs Founder Daniel Griggs was featured in an Forbes article titled The Best Website Strategies for Law Firms in 2021. The article discusses ways attorneys and law firms can optimize their online presence, reach more potential clients and grow their practices.

Some of the strategies recommended in the article included:

​​1. Make sure you own your website. If you don’t have 100% ownership of your law firm website, you could be losing business. It may seem tempting to hire a template-based web design company that can plug your law firm’s information into an existing website design, but this approach can prevent you from customizing your website and tailoring it to your target demographic.

2. Invest in SEO. Consumers in 2021 like to do their own research when determining the best products and services for them. An individual who is going to invest in legal services will likely use a search engine such as Google and scan through multiple websites before deciding on one they like. It is important that your website is search-engine-optimized so it appears on the first page of search engine results.

3. Employ mobile-first design. Consumers today are much more likely to use a mobile phone to search online and access websites than they are to use a desktop computer. The mobile experience should be the first priority in establishing a credible and engaging online presence for your law firm.

To read the full article, click here.

 Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

How to Use Video to Connect with Your Audience

Video is a powerful tool for increasing brand awareness and engagement. In fact, more than 50 percent of marketers say video helps them build trust with their audience. Right now, video-based apps like TikTok are skyrocketing in popularity as are the video functions of social media platforms, such as Instagram’s reels. Studies have shown that more than 45 percent of consumers will react or convert after watching a video.

There is a right way and a wrong way to use video in your digital marketing efforts. If done correctly, video marketing can lead to incredible growth for your company. However, the propensity for videos to “go viral” can be a blessing and a curse. Earlier this year, the CIA released a recruitment video that spread like wildfire on the internet and not in a good way. The piece received ridicule and backlash for being “overly woke” and trying too hard to reach the Millennial and Generation Z demographics.

Here are 5 tips for using video content to connect with your online audience effectively:

  1. Be realOne of the issues with the CIA video was its keyword stuffing and forced trendiness, which came across as inauthentic and gimmicky. It’s important that your videos feel real and personal to your audience so they feel they are connecting to the ethos of your brand.
  2. Provide value. Your videos shouldn’t just be about pitching your business to your audience. Make sure you are offering real value as well. If you decide to produce video ads, mix it up with video content that is informative, helpful or humorous.
  3. Vary your approach. It is important to use a number of different approaches to video content to see what really resonates with your audience. You can try short form videos, long form videos, interactive videos, and more to reach peak engagement.
  4. Use high quality tech. Video quality standards have gone up in recent years. Even small social media influencers use professional lighting, tripods, and high-quality lenses to capture their footage. A low quality video might turn off a viewer before they even see what your content is about.
  5. Add subtitles. Many people browse social media sites and websites on their phone with the volume turned down. In addition, some audience members may be hearing impaired.  Adding subtitles to your videos will ensure you are having the maximum possible reach.

 Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

The Secret to Creating Effective Social Media Ads

The average consumer sees between 6,000 and 10,000 ads in a day. Being constantly inundated with paid content means that it has become easier and easier for people to tune out online advertisements. Studies have found that most individuals see an ad seven times before they engage with it.

Social media ads can be a great way to generate leads, convert new customers, and raise brand awareness. However, creating effective social media ad campaigns is both an art and a science, and it takes a lot of time and energy to craft something that will actually have an impact.

There are many strategies and techniques that can help your social ads reach more people and generate more engagement. But the biggest secret to creating an effective social media ad is understanding your audience and their values.

At the end of the day, people don’t purchase a product or service for the product or service itself. Instead, they are hoping that their purchase will meet some sort of internal value or need. These values can include things like health, safety, self expression, adventure and peace. Understanding these motivators and learning how to talk about them to your audience is the key to generating good social media ads. Anything less runs the risk of being irrelevant to your audience at best and losing their business at worse.

Here are three steps to understanding and targeting your audience’s values:

1. Create a customer persona. If you haven’t already, create a customer persona for your ideal audience. Break down their lifestyle, their habits, their background, and most importantly the problem they are trying to solve. This will help you better identify their core values.

2. Identify your motivating keywords. Different keywords and calls-to-action will appeal to different audiences. Make sure you are using the right words for your target customer. For example, an individual who is seeking adventure or self-expression might be motivated by keywords such as “discover,” “create” or “experience.” However, someone who is seeking relaxation or ease might be more motivated by terms like “enjoy,” “deserve,” “get.”

3. ExperimentSocial media ads are all about experimentation. What your audience wants might change over time, so it is important to collect as much data as possible on how they’re interacting with your current post and ads. Double down on what seems to be working and don’t get too attached to your pet campaigns. Remember that these ads are about your audience, not your own personal taste and style.

Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

7 Myths About SEO

One of the best ways to increase website traffic for your business is through search engine optimization, or SEO, which improves the chances someone will organically find your website through an internet search. The higher a company ranks in search engine result listings for specific keywords, the more likely a user is to find that company’s website.

Google and other search engines use algorithms to determine which websites are most relevant to a user’s search query. There are a number of strategies that companies can use to make those algorithms work in their favor. However, because the digital world is constantly changing and evolving, it is important to stay up to date on the best SEO practices and how to implement them.

There is a lot of misinformation circulating about what is effective when it comes to SEO. This is mainly a result of certain standards and practices becoming outdated over the years as search engines become faster and better at identifying what users want and need.

Here are seven common myths about SEO to watch out for:

  1. More keywords = better. While it is important to include relevant keywords in your copy, it can be detrimental to use too many. This is known as keyword stuffing and some search engines might penalize you for it.
  2. Social media shares will impact SEO. It is always a good idea to create content that is easy to share on social media, however likes and shares on sites like Facebook don’t directly translate to a better search engine ranking.
  3. Headers must contain keywords. Most experts would recommend including relevant keywords in your main site header, but it’s not necessary to stuff keywords into all your site header tags throughout the page.
  4. Your domain name affects your ranking. Relevant and easy-to-understand domain names can help you build your brand, but a domain name that is too generic or contains too many keywords may appear less credible to users and may therefore negatively affect website traffic and ranking.
  5. Meta tags should contain all keywords. Meta tags are useful because they tell search engines what your page is about and can entice users to click on a link. However Google doesn’t use the meta tag for ranking purposes, so stuffing keywords in the meta tags will probably do more harm than good.
  6. It’s all about the words. Ranking high on search engine results is about more than the words you use in your tags and page content. It’s also about how well you engage users once they land on your site. If most users click on your website from a list of search engine results, only to quickly leave and return to the results to choose another option, it can negatively impact your future ranking.
  7. You can get penalized for duplicate content. Duplicate content can confuse search engines because they don’t know which page to prioritize on search engine results. However, you will not be penalized for having duplicate content.


The click-through rate for Google Ads is less than 2%, and the click-through rate for Facebook ads is less than 1%. In today’s digitally competitive environment, that means your SEO strategy needs to be foolproof in order to attract new leads and customers online.

Ready to take your marketing to the next level? Let’s talk.

5 ways to improve your mobile app strategy

The largest consumer generation is entering its prime spending years, has a collective $600 billion in spending power, and is redefining the way we do digital branding and marketing.

We’re talking about millennials. Marketers have had their eye on millennials—or adults ages 23 to 38—for years and are paying close attention to this generation’s digital habits to understand how best to reach them in the oversaturated online space.

Millennials browse the internet on their phones three times as much as they do on desktop computers or laptops. That means websites today don’t just need to be developed with mobile browsing in mind, they need to prioritize mobile. In fact, experts recommend that service providers consider creating a custom mobile app to serve the needs of their customers instead of relying solely on the mobile version of their website.

Not all apps are created equal, however. There are several best practices that will help ensure your mobile app is millennial friendly and will meet the expectations and standards of this massive consumer demographic.

To upgrade your mobile app experience, consider the following strategies:

  1. Streamline your login process. Accessing your app should be as quick and easy as possible while still maintaining high security standards. Login screens should be simple and intuitive with limited text or advertising content.
  2. Reduce friction. The app user experience should be a seamless flow with no sticking points that make the user pause, stall or wonder “now what?”. Methods to reduce friction include eliminating extraneous steps, simplifying forms, reducing pop-ops and incorporating built-in suggestions.
  3. Improve visual flow. The more your app design caters to the millennial aesthetic, the more likely this demographic is to trust your brand and engage with your content. Millennials tend to favor unique typography, large font, generous use of white space and interactive graphics.
  4. Offer 24/7 support. Millennials expect prompt responses to support questions. Preempting questions through FAQ sections and offering round-the-clock support through features such as chatbots can keep millennial users engaged and happy.
  5. Get a mobile app audit. A mobile app audit is a comprehensive review that will help determine whether you are reaching your target audiences in the most efficient and effective way possible.

Featured in Forbes: Is Your Small Business Website Secure?

Business owners have more options than ever when it comes to creating their own websites. What once required extensive coding and programming knowledge can now be accomplished through a drag-and-drop visual tool. However, while template-based and DIY websites are becoming more popular, they can also open businesses up to significant security risks.

Daniel Griggs, founder and CEO of ATX Web Designs, discusses some of these risks in an article recently published in Forbes, Is Your Small Business Website Secure?. The article outlines some of the common ways that hackers can infiltrate a small business website as well as some of the steps business owners can take to secure their sites.

These include:

  • Upgrading to a secure server with an SSL certificate. If you collect private information from site users, you need a hypertext transfer protocol secure (HTTPS), which prevents the interception of data. Additionally, SSL will encrypt information so that it cannot be breached.
  • Requiring complex passwords. Requiring all users to use complex passwords when signing into your site will help prevent their accounts from being hacked. For example, you can require users to use a combination of uppercase letters, lowercase letters and special characters in their passwords.
  • Putting a firewall in place. Firewalls can block duplicate internet protocol (IP) addresses automatically, which prevents spammers and hackers from registering multiple accounts from the same computer.
  • Using custom coding. Unfortunately, website templates built through CMS like WordPress can be more susceptible to hacking. Custom coding is much more difficult to breach.
  • Updating plugins. Failing to update your software and plugins can result in security vulnerabilities and issues on your website.

To read the full article on the Forbes website, click here.

Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

3 Branding Tips for Solopreneurs

Solopreneurs—or entrepreneurs who run a business on their own—are on the rise in the United States, numbering more than 40 million. Whether by choice or by necessity, solopreneurs wear every hat in their company, from CEO to accountant to customer service representative to marketing rep.

As busy people who are often operating on a tight budget, solopreneurs and small business owners sometimes overlook the importance of marketing their product or service in the digital space. There is a common misconception that digital marketing requires a large financial investment, so many solopreneurs see strong branding as a luxury rather than a necessity.

Regardless of the size of your business or ad budget, you can build a brand of your own. You may not be a Coca Cola, but you can still think about your message and how you want people to remember your service or product.

Here are three branding tips for solopreneurs that won’t break the bank.

  1. Create an emotional experience. Branding has largely to do with the type of emotional experience you create for customers and potential customers. How do you want your audience to feel? Safe? Excited? Elite? Entertained? Use this emotional experience to determine everything from the look and feel of your logo to the tone you use on your website and social media posts.
  2. Make it personal. Two advantages solopreneurs and small businesses have over larger competitors are personality and personalized attention. By making personal connections with customers and giving your digital content a strong personality, you can develop a strong brand that users are eager to follow and engage. Be sure to reinforce your brand personality across multiple platforms (such as website, social media and printed materials).
  3. Use keywords. What terms or words perk your audience’s attention? What phrases do potential customers use to search the internet for the type of product or service you offer? By honing in on keywords you can achieve a better search engine ranking and more effectively engage your target audience.

You may not have a $250,00 ad budget, but as a solopreneur, you can still work on building organic traffic and generating attention for your brand. This, in turn, will lead to more leads, sales and brand loyalty.

How To Find Your Customers’ Hidden Pain Point

The old saying tells us that “the customer is always right,” and successful brands know that there is a lot of wisdom in putting the customer first. After all, the reason your company exists is to provide a solution for some sort of problem that your customer has.

In the business world, the term “pain point” refers to a specific problem that your target audience is experiencing. It is the reason they are looking to your company (or your competitors) for a particular product or service. However, it is easy for businesses to get the pain point wrong or misunderstand what will really engage a target audience member and convert prospects into loyal customers.

This is because the obvious, surface-level pain point does not always address the core customer motivation. To really understand motivation, we have to understand that every human has a core set of psychological needs—such as safety, connection, respect, autonomy and freedom—and that products and services are simply ways to meet those needs.

For example, when John subscribes to a meal catering service, it’s not just because he wants to eat delicious food (although that might be part of the motivation). He subscribes to a meal service because he values his free time and autonomy and doesn’t want to spend hours cooking in the kitchen every week. His pain point is likely a lack of freedom and flexibility in his schedule or perhaps feeling overworked and overwhelmed.

By speaking to this hidden pain point, a meal service is much more likely to get John’s attention and convert him into a loyal customer.

To discover your customers’ hidden pain point, start with the obvious pain point and ask yourself what motivations might lie underneath. Then survey your target demographic and create audience personas so that you can confirm your predictions and narrow in on the core needs and desires your brand fulfills.

Have You Been Thinking About Business Value Wrong?

What value does your business offer?

Many entrepreneurs and business owners are accustomed to talking about the Unique Value Proposition (UVP) of their business. A UVP, also called a Unique Selling Proposition, essentially describes the benefits your company offers and how you differ from the competition. While it can be very useful to define your UVP, there is another way to think about business value.

Customers don’t actually buy products or services for the products and services themselves. This might seem like a bizarre statement, but it’s true. Customers purchase things that will meet a core, underlying need or desire for them, and these needs and desires are tied to the customer’s value system.

In other words, Jim doesn’t subscribe to a laundry service because he needs his laundry done. He subscribes because he values time and freedom—two things he will have more of if he outsources his laundry to a company. Similarly, Jill doesn’t buy a name brand purse because she needs a bag to hold her items. She likely purchases it because she values the respect and feeling of importance she will feel owning a designer handbag.

Coca Cola is a great example of value-based marketing. Coke commercials rarely try to sell soda. Instead, they sell a feeling of community, togetherness, and happiness. Their marketing motto is “creating brand value through content excellence,” and their campaigns certainly reflect that statement. For instance, the Share a Coke campaign encouraged customers to share a Coca Cola with a person whose name was written on the side of the bottle. Not only did this campaign produce viral video content, but it traded on the individual consumer’s personal connections to boost sales.

Companies that know the deeper value of their product in addition to the top level, immediate benefits can market and sell their brand far more effectively. Identifying and targeting core customer values and needs is the key to convincing them to invest in your product or service.

How to Scale Your Small Business Sustainably

“Sustainable growth” has become a popular phrase in the business world. Startups and small businesses in particular are focused on scaling their companies quickly yet dependably. After all, a company that grows too quickly without the proper structure and processes in place might risk burnout or the inability to match supply to demand. On the other hand, a company that grows too slowly may lose momentum and squander all its capital.

Digital technology has allowed for the exponential growth of small businesses, particularly in online spaces. The startup trend reflects just how easy it is to launch a venture with limited capital and grow it steadily in a short period of time.

However, scaling a small business sustainably is easier said than done. There are many pitfalls and challenges that entrepreneurs and small business owners face. Without proper guidance and strategy, they may find their company either stagnating or becoming unstable.

Here are five best practices for scaling a small business in a way that will encourage reliable growth for years to come.

  1. Focus on the problem you are solving. At the most basic level your product or service presents a creative solution to a common problem. Whenever you’re planning a new step for your company, you should keep this problem at the top of your mind. What is best for your customers and what will make their lives easier? Keep your audience in the center of your business decisions.
  2. Start small. Before you worry about developing every single bell and whistle of a new product or campaign, you need to start with the proof of concept—in other words, the proof that your vision is feasible and achievable. Does this actually work? Could this idea be turned into reality? Start with small “experiments” and when you see what works, follow that path.
  3. Know your benchmarks. What is success to you? Whether it is sales, site visitors, bounce rates, support calls, SEO ranking, brand engagement or otherwise, know the signs you are looking for to indicate your company is ready to move to the next phase or level. Make sure you are documenting and tracking this data so that transitioning to future phases becomes smoother and easier.
  4. Give it time. Any time you introduce a new way of doing things it will take your target audience some time to warm up to the idea. It will take catering and hand-holding to help users adjust to your platform and processes. If a new idea doesn’t land right away, give it time and make small tweaks and adjustments before you abandon it completely.
  5. Make sure your team is happy. High company morale is one of the biggest factors of success for a small company. If your team members feel connected and like they are making a difference, they will be more productive and more creative, allowing your company to innovate and grow.

3 Tips for Upgrading your Legal Website

Lawyers are like plumbers. We’re always going to need them. Through the ups and downs of the economy over the past 10 years, the legal industry has been steadily growing, but it’s also been going through some massive changes.

The truth is, even though demand is consistent, the legal industry will not be immune from the digital revolution. More and more people are searching for legal help online, and most clients will check out a lawyer’s website before hiring them. Millennials are driving a lot of this—they’re getting older, buying houses, running businesses, getting married, and getting divorced.

Legal professionals need to level up in the digital space if they want to compete. The Baby Boomer generation is aging out and the new generations have higher standards when it comes to online presentation and services. The sooner firms realize this and start investing in digital tech, the better chance they have at success.

Here are 3 tips for upgrading your legal website:

  1. 1. Make sure you own your website. If you don’t have 100% ownership of your law firm website, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. If you created your website through a generic legal marketing site, it’s going to be hard to update and customize your site, and transferring to a new host down the road will be a nightmare.
  2. 2. Invest in SEO. It’s all about the search engine rankings. Your website isn’t doing you any good if clients can’t find it. You need a solid SEO strategy and an experienced team that can implement it.
  3. 3. Focus on mobile. Most people use their phones to search the internet. Yes, you need a great website, but you also need it to be optimized for mobile devices so that people who land on your site can find the information they need and know what to do next.

If you’re not seeing a steady increase of traffic, leads and conversions through your law firm website, then it’s time for an upgrade.

The Top 20 Website Design Trends of 2021

The web design industry is a fast-paced and rapidly evolving one. Every year, new innovations in graphic design, user interface design, marketing, and backend development lead to new trends for websites and mobile applications.

Over the past year, we have seen businesses of all sizes increase their investment in their web presence. We were already living in a digital economy before COVID-19, but the global pandemic has emphasized the need for companies to improve their online brand and prioritize digital marketing.

Consumer habits have also changed, with more and more individuals choosing to shop online instead of in person. With the increased online participation and standards of the modern consumer, it is essential for businesses to keep up with design trends and present a digital brand that is relevant, engaging and effective in meeting its long-term goals.

Here are the top 20 website design trends predicted for 2021:

  1. Muted colors
  2. Authenticity and honesty
  3. Flat icons and illustrations
  4. Retro fonts
  5. Activism and supporting meaningful causes
  6. Parallax scroll animations
  7. Classic serif fonts
  8. Playfulness and optimism
  9. Illustrations
  10. Abstract and surreal art
  11. Minimalism
  12. Personalized experiences
  13. Vintage effects
  14. Animations
  15. Custom graphics
  16. Interactive landing pages
  17. Unique multimedia
  18. Embedded videos
  19. Non-traditional scrolling
  20. Gradient color schemes

Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

10 Tips for Writing Better Social Media Ads

About 42 percent of the world’s population, or 3.2 billion people, use social media, and the average user spends 2-3 hours a day on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok. Businesses have recognized the value of engaging with this massive online audience and social media ads have become an essential piece of modern marketing.

There is an overwhelming amount of demand for user attention on social media websites and apps. The average social media user sees between 6,000 and 10,000 ads per day and is inundated with content. That means that it is more important than ever for businesses to be smart about the advertising content they produce.

Here are 10 tips for creating better, more compelling social media ads.

  • Choose the right platform. Different social media platforms cater to different audiences. For example, members of Generation Z (16-24 year olds) are more likely to be active on apps like TikTok than they are to spend time on Facebook. Don’t waste time and money on social media ads that aren’t popular with your target demographic.
  • Focus on audience values. Effective social media ads offer an instant promise to meet the values and priorities of their audience. Identity your target demographic’s key values and create a list of ad keywords that speak to those values.
  • Include engaging photos and graphics. Most social media platforms are largely visual. If you want to quickly capture the attention of a user who is scrolling through social media, you need bold, engaging photos and graphics that will pause them in their tracks and encourage them to read your content.
  • Simplify your copy. Attention spans on social media platforms are incredibly short. Users are typically scrolling quickly and mindlessly through their feeds and don’t want to do more work than is necessary to read advertisements. To make it easier for your audience, simplify your ad copy by removing jargon, long words, adverbs and most adjectives.
  • Use a creative hook. A hook is the first line of your ad copy that catches the attention of a reader. A social media user may or may not even read your hook, but if they do, you want to make sure you are pulling them in with an intriguing question, a bold statement, a useful fact or a keyword that resonates with them.
  • Create a straightforward call to action. The call to action (CTA) is the next step you want someone to take after they read your ad. For the purpose of social media ads, CTAs should be short, simple and compelling. Try using motivating action words such as “create,” “discover,” “get,” and “try.”
  • Build a sense of urgency. You want to give your audience a reason to take action after reading your social media ad. Creating a sense of urgency will help motivate them to engage further with your brand and take the next step in the marketing funnel. For example, creating a special deal or discount with a time limit can persuade users to take action now instead of later.
  • Personalize your ads. Users are more likely to pay attention to ads that feel personal to them. Try including your audience’s city name in your ad headline or call out their demographic by name, such as “parents,” “college students” or “entrepreneurs.”
  • Maintain consistency between ads and landing pages. Consistency is key when it comes to online branding and the user experience. If your social ad is directing users to a landing page or website, make sure your colors, fonts, graphic design and content tone remain consistent between pages.
  • Collect data and experiment. To a certain extent, social media advertising is a giant experiment. What works well for one company may not work for yours—even if you fall within the same industry or cater to a similar audience. The most important part of social media marketing is to collect data on user behavior and engagement and modify your approach regularly to prioritize the type of copy and design that works for your audience.

Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

How to Instantly Improve Your Website Copy

Having a well-designed, user-friendly website is the first step toward developing a successful online brand. But great web design is practically useless without good copy. The text on your website is just as important as its aesthetic and usability.

Studies have found that website visitors will navigate away from a page if they cannot find what they are looking for within 10 seconds. That means your website copy has 10 seconds to convince users that your company can solve their problems better than the competition can.

Many business owners and entrepreneurs do not know where to start when it comes to creating content for their websites. It can feel overwhelming to try to condense an entire company or brand down into a few simple paragraphs on a landing page or homepage. As a result, many websites are bogged down by irrelevant or cumbersome content that turns site visitors away instead of converting them into paying customers.

Working with a professional content creator or digital marketing company is the best way to make sure your website messaging and branding is just right. However, there are a few easy ways that you can instantly improve your website copy on your own. Here are five strategies for creating more engaging, effective content for your website:

  1. Focus on the user. Perform an audit of your site content and see how often you use the word “you.” The majority of your website copy, particularly on the home page, should be focused on the user and not on your company.
  2. Move from problem to solution. Digital content marketing is about connecting with an audience’s pain points (the problem) and presenting your company’s product or service as a solution. Frame your content in terms of your audience’s challenges and how you can make their life better.
  3. Promote benefits, not features
    . Instead of writing about the features of your product or service, concentrate your writing on the benefits customers will receive when using your product or service. This places the attention on the user and helps them feel more engaged with your copy and with your brand.
  4. Include clear Calls to Action. Don’t assume your audience understands the next step they need to take in moving down the path to purchase—or that they will take initiative to move forward on their own. Each section of your website should indicate some Call-to-Action, such as “learn more,” “sign up,” or “browse our products.”
  5. Provide value. Your audience’s attention needs to be earned, so each piece of content on your site should provide some sort of value. Identify what your specific audience values then use bold, simple headlines and straightforward copy that showcase how you can provide that value.

Having a well-designed, user-friendly website is the first step toward developing a successful online brand. But great web design is practically useless without good copy. The text on your website is just as important as its aesthetic and usability.

Studies have found that website visitors will navigate away from a page if they cannot find what they are looking for within 10 seconds. That means your website copy has 10 seconds to convince users that your company can solve their problems better than the competition can.

Many business owners and entrepreneurs do not know where to start when it comes to creating content for their websites. It can feel overwhelming to try to condense an entire company or brand down into a few simple paragraphs on a landing page or homepage. As a result, many websites are bogged down by irrelevant or cumbersome content that turns site visitors away instead of converting them into paying customers.

Working with a professional content creator or digital marketing company is the best way to make sure your website messaging and branding is just right. However, there are a few easy ways that you can instantly improve your website copy on your own. Here are five strategies for creating more engaging, effective content for your website:

  1. Focus on the user. Perform an audit of your site content and see how often you use the word “you.” The majority of your website copy, particularly on the home page, should be focused on the user and not on your company.
  2. Move from problem to solution. Digital content marketing is about connecting with an audience’s pain points (the problem) and presenting your company’s product or service as a solution. Frame your content in terms of your audience’s challenges and how you can make their life better.
  3. Promote benefits, not features. Instead of writing about the features of your product or service, concentrate your writing on the benefits customers will receive when using your product or service. This places the attention on the user and helps them feel more engaged with your copy and with your brand.
  4. Include clear Calls to Action. Don’t assume your audience understands the next step they need to take in moving down the path to purchase—or that they will take initiative to move forward on their own. Each section of your website should indicate some Call-to-Action, such as “learn more,” “sign up,” or “browse our products.”
  5. Provide value. Your audience’s attention needs to be earned, so each piece of content on your site should provide some sort of value. Identify what your specific audience values then use bold, simple headlines and straightforward copy that showcase how you can provide that value.

7 Ways to Improve Your Brand’s Social Media Engagement

Having a solid social media strategy for your business is a crucial element of brand marketing. The average person spends about two and a half hours on social media every day while millennials, the largest consumer demographic, spend closer to three.

Social media engagement—or the comments, likes and shares your posts receive—are the best indicator of an effective social presence. If your account has tens of thousands of followers but little interaction with those followers, your content is falling on deaf ears. As a commercial brand, your social media accounts should strive for quality over quantity and help you build a solid foundation of loyal fans and customers.

Whether you are a social media novice, or have an established company brand online, here are seven tips for improving engagement with your audience.

  1. Post eye-catching photos and videos. On social media, striking photos and video content coupled with text get significantly more engagement than a block of text on its own. Incorporating multimedia is especially important on platforms like Facebook and Twitter that don’t require images for posts. Your photo only needs to be loosely related to your content, but make sure it isn’t click bait or you will lose the trust of your audience and the social media algorithms may work against you.
  2. Ask questions. Polls and questions are great ways to interact with your followers on social media. Whether you post the question in your feed, stories, or in a live video or reel, you are sure to connect with your audience in a deeper way.
  3. Be funny. A Sprout Social survey found that humor is the most desired brand characteristic after honesty, helpfulness and friendliness. Three out of four respondents said they wanted their brands to be funny, although only one in three thought snarky humor was appealing.
  4. Get personal. Studies have shown that more and more consumers favor brands that feel personal and personable. Don’t hide behind a professional veneer (unless that supports your brand image). Try posting behind-the-scenes-content, personal photos, and posts that show you are a real company run by real people.
  5. Partner with other brands. Cross-promotions and collaborations can be a very effective way to increase followers, sales and engagement. Partner with brands that have a similar audience and style to yours so that you can double down on what your followers already know and love.

Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here.

3 Ways to Increase Conversions Through User Centered Design

It is no secret that people like to think about themselves. It is one of our favorite topics. That’s why it should come as no surprise that when a user visits your website, they are usually thinking about themselves, their problems, and how your product or service can specifically benefit them.

User-centered design puts the customer in the spotlight. It puts their needs, objectives and expectations at the center of design and content decisions in order to better engage and, ultimately, increase conversions.

As a business owner, it might be tempting to build your website and online marketing strategy around your company’s history, mission and accolades. But research shows that the most effective way to generate leads and improve conversion rates is to put the user and their needs front and center.

Here are three ways to implement user-centered design and content strategy through your website and digital marketing.

1. Identify your audience
When a user visits your website, they should feel like the site was designed specifically for them. By understanding your audience and specifically naming or referencing them at the top of your site, you are signaling that you offer both relevance and value to them.

In today’s digital age, attention spans are short and a user could leave your website within a matter of seconds if they don’t find the content relevant. Users want to know “Is this product for me?” The faster you can answer that question, the more likely you are to engage with the user.

2. Identify their problem
The No. 1 reason a user will visit your website is because they have some type of problem they are trying to solve. What end users really want to know is “How will this product or service make my life better?”

Your website should be your best salesperson, and a good salesperson first gets to know the customer’s needs and then talks about the product or service. Your website should do the same. By setting up the problem-solution framework within the website design and content, the likelihood of improving conversion rates greatly increases.

3. Don’t brag
While reviews and testimonials can be effective in establishing credibility and brand trust, don’t get caught up in trying to prove how great your company is. Users want to determine this for themselves and too much bragging can begin to sound sales-y and turn some users away.

Instead, keep the focus on the customer and how your product or service can benefit them. Try using “you” language instead of or in addition to “we” language. Emphasize the value you can offer as opposed to how great you are at offering it.

By following these tips you can create a website that increases conversions through a client-centered approach. These tips can also be applied to your mobile app, social media and online marketing.

5 Ways to Improve Your Website Branding

When most people hear the word “brand,” they think of a company name or logo. They may even picture a specific, popular brand, such as Coca-Cola or Kleenex.

Following this logic, many entrepreneurs and business owners think of their company brand as purely visual—how the product and marketing looks and feels. But a business brand is much more than colors, fonts and design. A brand image is the entire experience a user has when interacting with your business, including their emotional experience, their mental associations with your business, and their interactions with customer service. Ideally, this brand image closely matches the company’s mission and vision. If not, it may be time for a redesign or brand overhaul.

When creating or upgrading a company website, branding is one of the most important elements to consider. If your website branding isn’t strong, engaging and consistent, you are guaranteed to lose out on leads and customers. Sometimes a complete website redesign is necessary, while in other cases, small, strategic fixes can make a world of difference.

Here are five proven ways to strengthen the branding on your company’s website to boost your brand image and bottom line.

  1. Simplify your content. Most company websites contain walls of text that overwhelm and distract the user. Typically, website users are trying to access information as quickly as possible. Shortening and simplifying your content down to its most accessible form will ultimately be more engaging for users.
  2. Maintain a consistent tone. Your design and content should represent a consistent tone across all website pages. Whether your tone is casual, professional, creative, cheerful, serious, or something else entirely, make sure all your website choices reflect that style.
  3. Focus on the user. Your website is about your user, not about you. All branding choices on a website, including design and content, should focus on the user’s needs, pain points and experience.
  4. Make it easy. The most popular brands are easy on the eyes and on the brain. Don’t make the user work too hard to see or understand who your company is and what you do. Use simple, complementary colors, fonts and design choices that don’t distract from your main site messages.
  5. Engage. Today’s consumers, particularly millennials, prefer brands that are friendly, conversational and engaging. Your website should incorporate user engagement strategies such as feedback forms, live chats, contact information, social media feeds and customer testimonials.

5 Tips for B2B Marketing in 2021

Over the past year there have been dramatic shifts in the way business runs in the United States. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the economic landscape and affected consumer habits and priorities. It has also altered the infrastructure and internal processes of many companies, leading to an increased focus on remote employment and digital services. Some industries—such as hospitality and tourism—have experienced major financial setbacks, while others—such as healthcare services and social services—are flourishing and expected to grow significantly in the coming years.

This means that B2B companies need to reorient themselves to the current business climate and pivot their marketing strategies to address the needs and priorities of 2021. We are living in a new type of society with new values, and experts predict that many of the pandemic-related changes are here to stay. For example, studies show that nearly 50 percent of consumers are avoiding leaving their homes and are purchasing more goods and services online. This shift will affect businesses of all types and sizes—whether they offer a digital-based product or not.

Here are five tips for B2B companies that will help them keep up with the times and tailor their marketing strategies to more effectively reach their target audience.

  1. Create new buyer personas. Perhaps you have already identified your target demographic and analyzed them in great detail. Well, it’s time to go back to the drawing board. Because of the pandemic, businesses now have different priorities in reaching their customers, which means your B2B company needs to reevaluate your target audience’s pain points, needs and channels.
  2. Optimize your website. More than 80 percent of shoppers visit a company’s website before purchasing a product or service. Business buyers also conduct thorough online research before moving forward with a particular company. In addition, the online spending of B2B buyers has been steadily increasing. This means that if your B2B website is not updated and optimized you will be missing out on leads and leaking potential profit.
  3. Focus on social. One study found that 75% of B2B buyers and 84% of C-level executives rely on social media to make purchase decisions. Social media engagement and interaction can potentially have more impact than cold outreach, such as email marketing campaigns, so it is important to heavily invest in social.
  4. Consider video and virtual events. A recent study by Cisco estimated that online video content will account for more than 82% of consumer internet traffic by 2022. Circle S Studio also predicts that virtual events and conferences are here to stay. If your B2B company isn’t taking advantage of video content and online events, you will be forfeiting leads and profit to the competition.
  5. Improve buyer enablement. In today’s digital-first world, buyers are seeking a personalized, self-directed buying process that focuses on their needs and allows them to lead the conversation. Buyer enablement means reducing friction in your online marketing channels and creating user-centric design and content that seamlessly leads prospects through the awareness-consideration-purchase process.

ATX Web Designs offers branding strategy and digital brand development services. For more information, drop us a line!

Build Your Brand Like a House

Have you heard the story about the man who built his house from scratch with no plan, blueprint, or design? Of course you haven’t, because this would be a ridiculous approach to constructing a building and would likely be an enormous waste of time and money.

Before you build a house, you need to go through a planning process. You assess your needs, wants, and functional requirements, and you hire an architect to create a blueprint so the home is completely mapped out before ground is broken. Sometimes the planning phase takes just as long, if not longer, than the construction phase.

Building your business brand is similar to building a new house. It’s incorrect to assume you can have an idea for a product or service and jump straight into implementation. While it may be possible in rare circumstances, it seldom leads to a sustainable, established brand that can easily scale and grow.

Your business brand is the story your company tells. It is the holistic experience your audience has when interacting with your company. These interactions range from an individual’s experience on a phone call with customer service to a fleeting glimpse of your logo on a billboard to the content on your business social media accounts.

Building a brand from the ground up takes intentionality, strategy, and a clear vision for the future, as well as the steps needed to make that vision a reality. Simply put, you need a brand blueprint. Each aspect of your business—from colors and fonts to the wording of your emails to your website design—needs to align with your core mission, personal values, and financial goals or you will fail to build a solid, cohesive brand.

Your blueprint will need to include elements such as:

  • A clear mission statement, Unique Value Proposition, and a list of short- and long-term objectives
  • A breakdown of your target audience and their pain points as well as an analysis of competitors and general industry trends
  • Clear user pathways and funnels to generate awareness about your company, educate your audience, and guide them to the solutions you offer
  • A description of the emotions and values you want to appeal to in your audience as well as content and marketing strategies that support these value propositions and lead your audience to the desired call-to-action

By establishing a solid brand blueprint, you can more effectively increase leads, improve sales, create a company reputation, strengthen customer loyalty, and scale your business.

ATX Web Designs offers branding strategy and digital brand development services. For more information, drop us a line!

What Story Is Your Brand Telling?

Every brand tells a story.

Some stories are like an exciting and compelling novel that the reader can’t put down. Others are more like a waiting room magazine that is skimmed and tossed aside.

So what story does your brand tell?

Your brand is the total impression your company makes. It includes your company personality, values, aesthetic, reputation, marketing strategies and customer service.

Brands succeed by telling a compelling story that rallies their target audience to action. A successful story has the following elements:

A hero. Every good story has a protagonist. In branding, the hero is your audience or your prospect. Not your company. Companies that focus on themselves and their accolades in their marketing content won’t effectively grab their audience’s attention.

A premise. The premise of a narrative is the overall message or concept it offers. Your company’s premise is the foundation for your brand and illustrates why a prospect should engage with your content. Without a solid premise, potential leads or customers won’t get past the first few pages of your story.

A problem. When is the last time you watched a great movie where the hero did not face any obstacles? In branding, the problem is your audience’s pain points. Successful brands hone in on their audience’s specific pain points and present their product or service as a solution to these pain points.

A victory. What makes the victory in a story satisfying? When the audience can emotionally identify with it and picture themselves in the hero’s shoes. Successful brands use strategies like impactful images, video, testimonials, vivid descriptions and clear calls-to-actions to help audiences imagine how a particular product or service will meet their needs and values—thus completing the hero’s journey.

That’s a real page turner.

Have a story you want your brand to tell? Reach to our expert team to schedule your consultation by clicking here.

Your Website Should Run Without You

If your website and mobile app are doing their job, they should run on their own. As an entrepreneur or business owner, your goal should be to get your digital platforms to the point where you are primarily monitoring the activity. There may be certain tasks you want to carry out personally, but everything else should be automated.

Here are three ways to automate your digital presence effectively and efficiently.

  • Predict the questions. Ideally your platform design and copy will make things crystal clear for the user. However, there will be some users who still have questions about the process or who will need assistance. You can save yourself time and energy by preempting these questions and requests before they escalate. For example, a “How-To” or “FAQ” section of your website will go a long way in addressing common concerns. Provide users with everything they need and make it easy for them to get their questions answered. Not only will this save you and your team time, but it can also make your users feel that your company cares about them and their experience with your platform.
  • Create customer service scripts. If an FAQ or ready-made response doesn’t address a customer’s concerns and they feel the need to personally reach out to your team, develop scripts and protocol ahead of time so you can work through each issue in the most efficient way. It is a good idea to track your customer service data so that you know the common sticking points and can see which methods work best for resolution. This will help you refine your scripts over time to make them even more effective.
  • Automate communication. If you invest some time and energy into making customer communication as automated as possible now, you will thank yourself later. From invoicing to billing to updates and announcements, everything can and should be automated. Your customers should be receiving regular communications from your company to keep them engaging with your brand. These communications could be in the form of newsletters, member emails, blog posts, social media posts, text messages or other formats.

3 Things You Need To Know About Creating a Mobile App

These days nearly everyone has had an app idea. What’s yours?

Maybe it came to you in the shower, or while driving, or when getting frustrated with a particular system or process for the 100th time. Over the past 10 years, it has become more simple to create a mobile app, but that doesn’t mean it has become easier. 

There is a lot of strategy, backend planning, design, and testing that goes into creating a successful mobile application. There are many companies that advertise mobile app design or development, but not all of them can help you build strategy and make sure your app will be popular and profitable once released. 

If you have an idea for a great mobile app and you’re ready to turn your idea into reality, here are the three most important things to keep in mind: 

  1. Defining your audience and paint points first will save you a lot of time. All apps are essentially a solution to a common problem. The foundation of your app is your target audience and their pain points—which you will be helping to solve. By clearly identifying your demographic and the problem you are solving up front, you will save yourself a lot of time and energy in the future. 
  2. Validating your idea is key. Validation is the proof that there is a demand for your app and that your app would work “in the real world.” You can validate your app idea by using keyword tools to prove users are searching for this idea, or by seeking out investors who have funded similar products. You could also build a landing page or email marketing campaign and gauge interest from your target demographic that way. 
  3. You need to simplify more than you think. Chances are you’ve thought of several helpful features your app could include. However, the first iteration of your mobile app should be fairly simple and straightforward. Launch with only the core features of your app and eliminate those that are simply a bonus. This keeps your initial costs down and allows you to adjust according to early user feedback. 

The most important part of building a mobile app is passion. If you are passionate about your product and the problem it is solving, you will have the motivation to do what it takes to see it succeed. Want to learn more about getting your mobile app idea off the ground? ATX Web Designs is a full-service mobile app design and development company. Schedule your consultation today by clicking here

5 Tips for Creating Engaging Website Content

When designing or redesigning a business website, many companies start with the visual branding elements: the colors, the photos, the graphics, the cool features. 

Although content is sometimes an afterthought in the website development process, it is equally as important as functionality or design. You may have a high-quality product promoted on a sleek, modern website, but a weak content marketing strategy will still cost you leads and sales.  

Content marketing is the strategic creation of text and multimedia that informs a user and leads them through a specific journey—typically from awareness to consideration to action.

Here are five ways to improve your website content to more effectively market your product and keep your audience engaged.  

  1. Know the purpose of each piece of content. Website real estate is extremely valuable. Attention spans are short and distractibility is high online. Each section of content on your website should have a distinct purpose. By knowing your end goals, you can more effectively mold your content to meet those goals. 
  2. Provide value. Your audience’s attention needs to be earned, so each piece of content on your site should provide some sort of value. Identify what your specific audience values then use bold, simple headlines and straightforward copy that showcase how you can provide that value. 
  3. Move from problem to solution. Digital content marketing is about connecting with an audience’s pain points (the problem) and presenting your company’s product or service as a solution. Frame your content in terms of your audience’s challenges and how you can make their life better. 
  4. Include clear Calls to Action. Don’t assume your audience understands the next step they need to take in moving down the path to purchase—or that they will take initiative to move forward on their own. Each section of your website should indicate some Call-to-Action, such as “learn more,” “sign up,” or “browse our products.” 
  5. Work with the design and functionality – The design and functionality of your website should not be developed separately from the content strategy. At ATX Web Designs, our designers, developers and content writers work together to holistically develop digital products that capture a company’s essence and effectively engage users. 

Questions about how content marketing and web design strategies could elevate your brand and improve your bottom line? Schedule a consultation with one of our digital strategists by clicking here

What Size Web Design Agency Should You Hire?

Hiring a web design and development agency is a smart move for businesses of any size and in any industry. These days, a company’s brand and reputation depend largely on its online presence. A high-quality website and engaging digital marketing content could be the deciding factors between a company’s success and failure. 

Not all web design agencies are created equal, however, and one of the most significant variables is size. If you’re considering web design services, you may be struggling to decide whether to hire a freelancer, small agency, medium-sized agency, or large agency. 

It can be a daunting task to wade through the pros and cons of hiring a small or large web design company, so we have simplified it for you. The following is a breakdown of both the benefits and disadvantages of agencies of various sizes. 

Freelancers

Pros: Cost and flexibility are two advantages offered by freelancers. Freelance web designers and developers typically set their own schedule and rates, and may be able to customize both for your project. 

Cons: There is less accountability and more risk when working with a freelancer, even those who come with positive reviews. In addition, a freelancer cannot offer the diversity of experience and skill available through an agency. 

Small Agency 

Pros: Small agencies (2-10 people) are sure to give your project personalized attention. They may also cater to a particular audience and have industry-specific knowledge. Sometimes, not always, small agencies charge a rate comparable to freelancers. 

Cons: Small agencies may not have the resources to complete complex projects in a timely manner. They may also not have the experience or technical skills that can be found at larger companies with more staff and a broader portfolio. 

Medium Agency 

Pros: Medium agencies are the best of both worlds. They have the staff and resources to handle even the most complex projects, but they are small enough to maintain personal connections with clients.

Cons: Medium-sized agencies may not offer the reduced rate you would receive from a freelancer or small agency. 

Large Agency 

Pros: Large agencies have experience and resources at their disposal. Their diverse portfolios and large staff allow them to take on extensive and complex projects. 

Cons: Large agencies can be less personal. Your project may be outsourced or viewed as just a number, and you may not receive the personal attention or customization you’re seeking. You may also encounter more bureaucracy and red tape with a large agency. 

If you have questions about your web design project and would like to discuss options with design and development professionals, please reach out to us

What Brand Identity Is….And What It Isn’t

Branding isn’t just about recognizable labels or Superbowl commercials or even popularity. Every company that exists has a brand identity. 

Simply put, brand identity is how your consumers view your company or product. A business’ personality, values, marketing techniques and aesthetic all contribute to its unique brand identity. 

Some small businesses and new businesses might operate under the misconception that they need to be well-established or famous to have a company “brand image,” but that isn’t the case. 

It isn’t a question of whether or not your company has a brand identity, but whether you are harnessing the power of your brand. Branding is an important marketing tool that can be used to increase leads, improve sales, create a company reputation and strengthen customer loyalty. 

To further clarify, here is a short list of what brand identity isn’t

  1. Your logo and tagline. Branding is much more than your company’s logo and tagline, or even your company aesthetic. Branding requires defining a clear message and tone and staying consistent across all your social media platforms, written content and marketing materials. 
  2. Expensive. Creating a brand identity doesn’t have to be an expensive process. Even with a small marketing budget, you can develop a solid brand through identifying a niche market, appealing to your audience’s values, and being consistent in your marketing and customer service efforts. 
  3. Permanent. Branding and brand image can be changed over time through a process called rebranding. If you don’t like the way your company is received by the public, you always have time to change. Major companies that have successfully gone through a rebranding process include Old Spice (which used to be known as a hygiene product line for older generations) and McDonald’s (which has shifted to be more health-focused in recent years). 
  4. A one-time effort. Maintaining a strong brand identity requires regular upkeep. Consistency and continuity are key. By creating a consistent look, feel, voice and message for your brand and then regularly presenting the brand to your audience across a range of platforms, you will establish a credible and likeable brand image. 

 

ATX Web Designs offers branding strategy and digital brand development services. For more information, drop us a line

How To Distinguish Your Brand From Competitors

No matter how innovative, effective or successful your brand, you will always have competitors. Original concepts rarely exist—if you believe something is a great idea, chances are someone else thought of the same thing.

In a competitive market, what often sets your company apart is not the quality of the product or service, but the quality of the branding.

Branding creates the emotional experience for users interacting with your company. Effective brand strategy can generate new leads, increase sales and strengthen customer loyalty.

So how do you differentiate your brand in a fast-paced and ever-evolving digital marketplace? Here are five tips to get you started.

  1. Find your niche. The more specific you can be in defining your target audience, the higher chance you will have of distinguishing your brand. Today’s consumers, particularly millennials, prefer brands that feel personal and customized. Narrowing your focus will help you market more effectively and effectively.
  2. Implement strategic campaigns. Instead of paying for generic, catch-all advertising, design your marketing efforts around strategic campaigns. Research audience trends and build your campaign around a particular demographic and value proposition.
  3. Appeal to values. Consumers are more likely to be emotionally moved (and consequently financially moved) by brands that appeal to their values. Find out what your audience values—such as security, ease, or status—and design your brand around those concepts.
  4. Engage with your audience. In today’s digital world, consumers are more likely to interact with brands that are personal and responsive. Your brand’s online platforms, such as your website and social media accounts, should be friendly, helpful and actively engaging with your customer base.
  5. Don’t skimp on design. Users will leave a website within a few seconds if the site doesn’t appear credible, useful and easy to navigate. Website design, photography and videography are not areas to cut corners if you’re looking to differentiate your brand. One poorly designed web page or sub-par photograph could make or break your brand image.

ATX Web Designs offers digital brand consulting and strategy services. Contact us for more information.

3 Branding Tips for Solopreneurs

Solopreneurs—or entrepreneurs who run a business on their own—are on the rise in the United States, numbering more than 40 million. Whether by choice or by necessity, solopreneurs wear every hat in their company, from CEO to accountant to customer service representative.

As busy people who are often operating on a tight budget, solopreneurs and small business owners sometimes overlook the importance of marketing their product or service. There is a common misconception that marketing requires a large financial investment, so many solopreneurs see strong branding as a luxury rather than a necessity.

Regardless of the size of your business or ad budget, you can build a brand of your own. You may not be a Coca Cola but you can still think about your message and how you want people to remember your service or product.

Here are three branding tips for solopreneurs that won’t break the bank.

  1. Create an emotional experience. Branding has largely to do with the type of emotional experience you create for customers and potential customers. How do you want your audience to feel? Safe? Excited? Elite? Entertained? Use this emotional experience to determine everything from the look and feel of your logo to the tone you use on your website and social media posts.
  2. Make it personal. Two advantages solopreneurs and small businesses have over larger competitors are personality and personalized attention. By making personal connections with customers and giving your digital content a strong personality, you can develop a strong brand that users are eager to follow and engage. Be sure to reinforce your brand personality across multiple platforms (such as website, social media and printed materials).
  3. Use keywords.. What terms or words perk your audience’s attention? What phrases do potential customers use to search the internet for the type of product or service you offer? By honing in on keywords you can achieve a better search engine ranking and more effectively engage your target audience.

You may not have a $250,00 ad budget, but as a solopreneur, you can still work on building organic traffic and generating attention for your brand. This, in turn, will lead to more leads, sales and brand loyalty.

Three Common Marketing Mistakes Franchises Make

Franchises are a popular business structure that face a unique challenge when it comes to marketing. To be successful, franchisors need to support the independence of their individual franchisees while also maintaining a consistent brand image.

There are three common marketing mistakes that franchise owners make, and they all  relate to the way independent franchisees present themselves online.
Here are the pitfalls to avoid when developing marketing strategies for your franchise:

  1. Inconsistent franchisee sites and domain names. Inconsistencies between the corporate franchise website and franchisee landing pages create confusion for users and reduce brand visibility and credibility. It is important for franchises to remain consistent in how they present franchisee web pages. These pages should either all be hosted under the main corporate website, or they should have independent domain names. Your franchise brand could lose potential sales if users get a different experience on your corporate website than they do on franchisee websites.
  2. Failure to utilize SEO. It is important for brand consistency and visibility that each franchise location ranks on the first page of Google and other search engine results. This allows for backlinks and means rankings will be boosted for any new franchisee. However, it is critical not to duplicate content on independent franchisee websites. This could cause your company to be penalized by Google.
  3. Social media accounts lack uniformity. Social media management can be challenging for franchises. Since platforms like Facebook and Instagram are so personal, each franchisee account will likely vary in voice, tone, aesthetic, and posting frequency. Franchises should control social media at the corporate level or create a social-media-specific brand and style guide for franchisees.

A better digital structure will create more brand value, visibility and credibility, and will ultimately help your franchisees increase sales and retain customers. ATX Web Designs is skilled and experienced at helping franchises create consistent brands, rank highly on search engines, and improve sales through cohesive marketing efforts. Visit our franchise page to learn more.

 

5 Web Design Myths … Busted

Your website is likely the first place consumers encounter your brand, and the design not only conveys information about your products and services, but also speaks to your values, style, and relevance. 

In an article published by Inc., ATX The Brand Founder Daniel Griggs responded to five common website design myths and shared the reality behind good web design. 

Myth 1. Your website can’t serve multiple audiences
There may be gaps in technological knowledge and aesthetic taste, but that doesn’t mean your website design can’t appeal to multiple demographics. Work smarter, not harder, to engage with each of your target audiences by finding the areas where their preferences overlap. For example, the baby boomer and millennial generations may both prefer large font and less cluttered design. 

Myth 2. Content is content

Not all content is created equal. The average website visitor will leave a page after 10 to 20 seconds if they are unable to access the information they need, so your site should convey your main message as quickly and simply as possible. Be as bold and blatant as you can about answering the three W’s—Who are you? What do you do? Why should a user do business with you? If your website has a high bounce rate, this could be an indicator that you are not keeping it simple enough. 

Myth 3. You need to tell your whole story on your homepage

Your users’ first interaction with your website should make them feel like it was designed for them. Avoid overwhelming site visitors with details about every facet of your product or service and instead create clear calls to action that help specific audiences quickly and easily navigate to the content they need. 

Myth 4: A well-designed desktop version is good enough

A well-designed desktop version of your website is important, but research shows that the mobile version is crucial. The Pew Research Center reports that 28 percent of millennials are smartphone-only internet users, meaning that nearly one third of the country’s largest consumer demographic will be viewing your website solely on their phones. 

Myth 5: You don’t need a website audit 

Quality website and mobile app design requires a professional set of eyes. A website audit is a comprehensive review of your design and content that will help determine whether you are reaching your target audiences in the most efficient and effective way possible. A full audit will help expose weak spots and improve the usability of your website and mobile app to ensure you are reaching the greatest amount of people in the most effective way. This will help conversion, which means more leads. 

5 Web Design Myths … Busted

Your website is likely the first place consumers encounter your brand, and the design not only conveys information about your products and services, but also speaks to your values, style, and relevance. 

In an article published by Inc., ATX The Brand Founder Daniel Griggs responded to five common website design myths and shared the reality behind good web design. 

Myth 1. Your website can’t serve multiple audiences
There may be gaps in technological knowledge and aesthetic taste, but that doesn’t mean your website design can’t appeal to multiple demographics. Work smarter, not harder, to engage with each of your target audiences by finding the areas where their preferences overlap. For example, the baby boomer and millennial generations may both prefer large font and less cluttered design. 

Myth 2. Content is content

Not all content is created equal. The average website visitor will leave a page after 10 to 20 seconds if they are unable to access the information they need, so your site should convey your main message as quickly and simply as possible. Be as bold and blatant as you can about answering the three W’s—Who are you? What do you do? Why should a user do business with you? If your website has a high bounce rate, this could be an indicator that you are not keeping it simple enough. 

Myth 3. You need to tell your whole story on your homepage

Your users’ first interaction with your website should make them feel like it was designed for them. Avoid overwhelming site visitors with details about every facet of your product or service and instead create clear calls to action that help specific audiences quickly and easily navigate to the content they need. 

Myth 4: A well-designed desktop version is good enough

A well-designed desktop version of your website is important, but research shows that the mobile version is crucial. The Pew Research Center reports that 28 percent of millennials are smartphone-only internet users, meaning that nearly one third of the country’s largest consumer demographic will be viewing your website solely on their phones. 

Myth 5: You don’t need a website audit 

Quality website and mobile app design requires a professional set of eyes. A website audit is a comprehensive review of your design and content that will help determine whether you are reaching your target audiences in the most efficient and effective way possible. A full audit will help expose weak spots and improve the usability of your website and mobile app to ensure you are reaching the greatest amount of people in the most effective way. This will help conversion, which means more leads. 

You’re Going to Drop the Ball

You are going to fail in business. The question isn’t “if,” but “when.” 

Hopefully you enjoy more success than failure, but there will always be bumps in the road along the way. No matter how hard you hustle, when you have a lot of balls in the air we will inevitably drop one. 

ATX The Brand Founder Daniel Griggs published an article on Forbes that lists his top tips for how to respond when that ball hits the ground. 

  1. Take ownership When you do inevitably drop the ball in some way, it is important to take ownership of your mistake. When confronted with a misstep, we tend to want to shift blame or make excuses for our actions, but claiming responsibility can be an important part of reaching a resolution quickly and effectively. If you are going to point the finger, point the finger at yourself. 
  2. Create realistic expectations Being proactive by creating realistic expectations at the outset of a project is critical, and it is just as important to identify clear deliverables and limits when something goes wrong. Be careful not to overpromise in an attempt to rectify a mistake or mitigate discomfort. If you need to recalibrate, set a realistic scope. It is not about what you and your team are capable of accomplishing, it is about how well you can meet the client’s goals while working within their parameters.
  3. Over-communicate There is no such thing as too much communication with a client. Just because you said something one time does not mean your message was received or understood. If you said it once, say it again. And again.Do not avoid a client because they are upset or because the mistake is awkward or uncomfortable. Stay in constant contact so the client knows you are on their side and are taking every necessary step to correct the issue. Dropping the ball is never fun but it does not have to be the end of the world. If you respond to failure by taking ownership, setting realistic expectations for addressing the problem, and communicating clearly, you will be able to bounce back in no time. 

4 Dating Rules To Apply To Client Relations

Yes, you read that right. 

At ATX Web Designs we believe that every client deserves special treatment. In fact, we believe courting a new client is not unlike, well, courting. The same rules apply whether you are taking a prospective client out to coffee or taking a Hinge match out to dinner. 

CEO Daniel Griggs recently published an article on Medium about common dating rules you can apply to client relations. 

Here are his top four tips that will not only lead to better brand loyalty, but also to improved conversions and a bigger bottom line. 

  1. Prove your interest. Your date doesn’t want to guess whether you are interested or rely on hints or subtle social cues. Similarly, your clients should have a clear understanding of how valuable they are to you and what you’re willing to do for them. Don’t beat around the bush. As soon as a potential client shows interest, prove your commitment with an initial investment. For example, if someone subscribes to your newsletter, give them a free online resource of piece of valuable content right away. 
  2. Don’t do all the talking. Seriously. The more you listen, the better you will be able to understand your target audience and cater to their preferences. In particular, you want to listen for your audience’s pain points and then present your product or service as a solution to their problem. Customer feedback forms, consultations and social media engagement are great ways to listen better. 
  3. Don’t Ghost. No one likes to be left hanging. As soon as you exchange information with a potential client, start communicating. You can never follow up soon enough. When it comes to building and maintaining client relationships, consistency is key. Make sure you are regularly touching base with both your leads and current clients to keep them interested and invested. You want your brand to become a part of your audience’s everyday life so that you become their natural go-to product or service. 
  4. Let your friends set you up. Have a satisfied customer or a great review? Use it to your advantage. Consumers trust the opinions and recommendations of those in their peer group. Let your happy clients do some of your marketing work for you by incentivizing referrals or positive reviews. Try a referral program or online contest to gather leads from your current client base. 

At the end of the day, our clients just want the same thing than any of us want in a relationship: honesty, respect, appreciation and attention. By proving your interest, listening, communicating consistently and building out your network, you will attract new leads and earn the loyalty of current clients. They will be wanting to put a ring on it in no time. 

Tweet Talk: 3 ways to woo millennials with your social media presence

Millennials, Generation Y, The Facebook Generation, Echo Boomers. No matter what you call them, adults ages 23 to 38 make up a large proportion of the U.S. population—about 25 percent—and their spending power is growing daily. Millennial purchasing power is expected to reach $1.4 trillion by 2020, making them the perfect target demographic.

However, millennials also consume mass amounts of media—potentially more than 70 hours a week—and are flooded by advertisements and marketing campaigns. Social media in particular has become a platform for attempting to catch the attention of this influential consumer demographic. Personalization, direct engagement and responsiveness in social media posts are three ways a company can stand out from the pack when engaging with Generation Y. 

  • Personalize it

Millennial consumers may dismiss traditional advertising or social media content that feels too much like a sales pitch. Millennials are drawn to brands that feel personal, creative or that match their own values. In a Boston Consulting Group survey, 59 percent of millennials reported that their favorite brands were a reflection of their style and personality, and 40 percent said they were willing to pay more for a brand that matched what they wished to convey about themselves. 

Easy ways to personalize your social media posts include:

  • Posting “behind the scenes” content, such as a spotlights on staff or members
  • Adopting a friendly, relaxed attitude when responding to comments and questions
  • Showcasing your brand’s unique style or voice
  • Following and engaging with current pop culture trends  
  1. Engage directly 

Social media accounts aren’t just a place to promote your product, they are a channel for direct communication with clients and future clients as well as a tool for building brand trust. Millennials favor businesses and brands that promote a two-way, mutual relationship with their client base. A Sprout Social survey found that 76% of respondents were more likely to purchase a brand they felt connected to on social media than they were to purchase from a competitor. Directly engaging with followers by answering questions, commenting on posts or asking for feedback can build trust and credibility among potential millennial customers. 

  1. Respond quickly
    When it comes to social media responsiveness, speed matters. A 2016 study found that more than 80 percent of customers expect a response within 24 hours of posting on social media and more recent research indicates customers look for a response in as little as 30 minutes or one hour. According to a Twitter study, quick responses were linked to higher customer satisfaction, willingness to recommend the brand, and revenue potential. The study found that customers were willing to pay almost $20 more for an airline ticket when an airline responded to a customer’s Tweet in fewer than six minutes. Answering questions and addressing concerns in a timely manner on social media can help retain and build your millennial customer base. 

Is your company maximizing the potential of its digital presence to win over millennials? ATX Web Designs can perform a website and mobile app audit to help you improve your web presence and also offers website and app development services. 

Moving your event online? Don’t make these common mistakes

As the COVID-19 pandemic escalates, many companies have decided to move their events, conferences and trade shows online instead of canceling or rescheduling. 

But transforming a live event into a virtual one brings its own challenges. Unfortunately it isn’t enough to set up a camera and hit “record” or “go live.” 

If you’re planning an online event, here are some common pitfalls to avoid. 

  • Skimping on audio-visual equipment. Visual presentation is a critical component of virtual events. Invest in high quality cameras, lighting and sound equipment to make your event as professional and engaging as possible. 
  • Not testing everything ahead of time. Before going live, you will need to run several tests of your equipment and programming. Designate time for these trial runs in your pre-production schedule so that everything runs smoothly on the big day. 
  • Holding yourself to the same standards. Virtual events are a different ballgame with their own set of rules. Audience attention spans are shorter, their expectations are different, and their participation or investment level may fluctuate. Revist the benchmarks for your event and see if they still seem reasonable given the new format. 
  • Assuming your audience is tech-savvy. Regardless of demographic, your audience may not have a good grasp on your virtual event platform and tools. Make sure to educate them before the event begins and provide multiple channels for assistance and support once you launch. 
  • Assuming your presenters are tech savvy. Public speaking skills don’t always translate to video conferencing skills. Your presenters might need some support with aspects like video lighting and framing in addition to training on live video programs. 

As with any live event, be prepared for something to go wrong during your virtual event and have a Plan B (and Plan C) ready to go. Remember that everyone is figuring this out as they go along and be easy with yourself and your team if mistakes happen. 

5 Ways To Make Your App Millennial-Friendly

Move over, baby boomers. The largest consumer generation is entering its prime spending years and has a collective $600 billion in spending power.

As millennials—or adults ages 23 to 38—begin to settle down, start families and invest in their futures, businesses of all kinds are enhancing their mobile capabilities to cater to these digital natives. 

Here are five ways companies can improve their mobile app experience to better reach and engage with this influential demographic. 

  1. Streamline your login process. Accessing your app should be as quick and easy as possible while still maintaining high security standards. Login screens should be simple and intuitive with limited text or advertising content. 
  2. Reduce friction. The app user experience should be a seamless flow with no sticking points that make the user pause, stall, or wonder “now what?”. Methods to reduce friction include eliminating extraneous steps, simplifying forms, reducing pop-ops and incorporating built-in suggestions.
  3. Improve visual flow. The more your app design caters to the millennial aesthetic, the more likely this demographic is to trust your brand and engage with your content. Millennials tend to favor unique typography, large font, generous use of white space and interactive graphics. 
  4. Offer 24/7 support. Millennials expect prompt responses to support questions. Preempting questions through FAQ sections and offering round-the-clock support through features such as chatbots can keep millennial users engaged and happy. 
  5. Get a mobile app audit. A mobile app audit is a comprehensive review that will help determine whether you are reaching your target audiences in the most efficient and effective way possible. 

ATX Web Designs Founder Featured in Forbes

Founder Daniel Griggs was recently featured in an article on the Forbes, Inc. website about the responsibility tech entrepreneurs have in supporting and creating social change.

In the article, Griggs describes his inspiration for creating the school bus tracking software Bus Kids Safe, as well as the lessons he learned along the way.

The Bus Kids Safe app uses GPS technology to allow parents and schools to track school buses in real time and get notifications about pick-up times, drop-off times and delays.

Griggs created the app after a nerve-wracking incident in which his son’s school bus was over an hour late to the stop. He said the process of creating, developing and marketing the app revealed several important lessons about how to use digital products to address pressing social issues:

  1. Don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Sometimes the most sustainable change is incremental change. Trying to progress too far too fast could actually be counterproductive. Bus Kids Safe took something that already existed (bus driver check-in processes) and digitized it instead of creating something new altogether.
  1. Borrow from other industries. Chances are, something that is working in one industry can be cross-applied to another industry. The solutions to some of our societal challenges may already exist and just need to be adapted to address specific problems. For example, GPS tracking of public transportation already exists — Bus Kids Safe just harnesses the technology for the education industry.
  1. Incentivize early adoption. You may have the greatest app in the world, but it cannot create social change if you don’t have users. Focus your marketing efforts and incentive programs on getting early subscribers for your app. This can create community buy-in and organic sharing of your product. The Bus Kids Safe technology is currently free for local schools and parents, motivating more districts to get on board.

It is the responsibility of tech leaders to use their power to create something better. Let’s start innovating!

The secret to keeping your social media ‘on brand’

Social media is one of the most powerful marketing tools available, but to fully harness its potential, businesses need to establish a consistent brand.

Why is consistent branding important?

Staying “on brand” within and across social media platforms is crucial for creating brand recognition, credibility and loyalty. It signals to both potential and existing customers that your brand is established, dependable, trustworthy and engaged.

Social media is a fast-paced world that thrives on novelty, but studies have shown that consumers are also affected by familiarity bias, which means they favor the consistent and the familiar. Successful brands need to both keep their content fresh and engaging and create enough continuity in their messaging to give users the feeling of dependability and familiarity.

So what is the most effective way for a company to develop a strong brand and continue to stay on brand through growth and transition? The secret boils down to one word:

Strategy.

In an article featured in Small Business Trends, ATX Web Designs founder and CEO Daniel Griggs advised businesses to create a strategy and system for their social media posts.

While it can be time-consuming and even tedious at times to plan and schedule social media posts, this process will give you the most return on your investment. Creating a strategy and schedule for your social media posts allows you to think about the content you want to present, cross-promote, synchronize posts and make sure each piece of content matches with your brand and company vision.

Developing brand guidelines and a style guide is a must for maintaining brand consistency. There are many aspects beyond the actual content to consider when establishing these guidelines, such as

  • Tone and personality
  • Visual design
  • Multimedia
  • Font and color scheme
  • Logo
  • Offline and internal marketing

Utilizing a content calendar and post scheduler will help ensure that all these aspects of your social media content represent a consistent brand and are in line with your company’s greater vision.

There is no shortcut to creating and maintaining a cohesive online brand and presence. It requires pre-planning, strategy and commitment. Most of all it takes time. Building trust with your consumer base requires patience and consistent effort but the results will boost your credibility as well as your bottom line.

If you’d like to develop more brand cohesion throughout your website and mobile app, ATX Web Designs offers design and development services customized for your business.