We are well into the age of the internet; in a world of over 7 billion people 51.7% are connected to the internet (of June 2017). The world is dominated by cyberspace, all engaging, communicating and sharing information online.
Owning a website instantly appeals to the current and evolving, worldwide social and marketing trends. A list of benefits include:
- Increasing your Local and Global Exposure
- Improved Advertising
- Easy Access to Customers (Contacts)
- Improved Productivity
- Market Expansion
- Selling your Products and Services online
- Personal Internet Identity
- Linking with new Customers, Clients and Companies
- Cheap Market Research
- Improved Customer Service
Owning a website can be useless unless its effective, efficient, easy to use and simple to understand. Effective web design considers:
- Responsive, Relative Design
- User-Friendly Interface + Navigation
- Content Quality + Quantity
- Community + Networking
- Personalised + Unorthodox Design
- Regular Activity + Updates
- Cluttered, Irrelevant, Bad Quality Content
- Difficult/Unavailable User-Navigation
- Eyesore Design
- Lack of Customer Awareness + Business Acumen
- An Outdated Individual Image
In today’s world, we access the web from a variety of screens, solutions and locations; namely:
- Tablet Computers
- Desktop PCs
- Games Consoles
- TV Sets
Modern web devices such as smart-phones and tablets enable us to access the internet on-the-go, within reason anywhere at any time.
- User Experience
Being able to access a website from multiple devices increases functionality and exposure to different ages and tech-knowledge of customers and clients. Also your website can respond to the different shapes and screen limitations of various devices, being clear and easy to use no matter how you view it.
Furthermore touch-screen allows for user interactivity and animated designs, attracting users to share fun and entertaining experiences.
- Worldwide Access
We can now work from more than just an office desk, with the ability to work from home or even multiple offices etc.
- App Collaboration
The web now allows you to incorporate and work with apps, using different apps to access, feature, develop and edit content for web upload.
Marketing and advertising is more or less produced with the web in mind, seen to be a staple for businesses and services to be actively online. There are a variety of websites that can be utilized to suit the needs and demands of certain people:
- Social Media
Arguably the most commonly known and most used form of website, it was reported last year that the average internet user owns 7 social accounts, twice the average from 2012.
We use them as an online communication channels to create personalised online profiles, share content, collaborate and interact with one another.
Types of social platforms include:
- Microblogging (Twitter, Tumblr)
- Forums (Reddit)
- Social Networking (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn)
- Social Curation (Pinterest)
- Wikis (Wikipedia)
- Photo Sharing
Usually paid for by online advertising, there are potentially hundreds are sites dedicated to photo sharing, namely Flickr.com, Photosite.com to name two. Digital cameras and phones alike now come with apps that enable you to create digital slide-shows and presentations that can then be uploaded.
Instagram can be classed as a photo sharing website however is more inclined as social media due to its chronological time-line and other similar nature.
A huge trend for marketing and advertising, blogging is a method of journalising and documenting a day-to-day life. Sites include WordPress, Blogger, Squarespace, Wix to name a few.
Vlogging is also a largely popular trend, main-streaming from video-sharing giant Youtube. A demand for video-generated content, ‘vloggers’ have developed a personal brand that extends to product endorsement and their own range, depending on content (e.g. Beauty content – beauty products)
Businesses small and large use online shopping to sell products and services. Advantages include time, money, streamlining operations and lowering costs.
Self-Promotion relies on dedication, persistence and an understanding of marketing on social media and other platforms. In context of the creative market, today a plethora of free platforms is available to use such as:
Targeting more of an older, localised demographic. Your profile should revolve around sharing and talking about all things design related. Perhaps even a brand page showcasing your work and progress, sharing articles and industry thoughts?
It can help establish credibility and notability within your working area, also where you can find your prospective employers and clients.
*Pin a video or post as a first-impression introduction to these people, or showing your passion and knowledge of the creative industry?
Designed for professionals, the network is a powerful and staple resource for career prospectives, seeking new employers and linking to the professional, creative community (depending on your subject).
Your profile appears as a CV and application for work, you can be recommended by others and also upload video and photos.
*Use multimedia uploads as a video testimonial, demonstrating your commitment and understanding of creative work.
*Make presentation decks of your work, showcasing a PDF portfolio accessible to employers, clients and recruiters.
Opposite to Facebook, Twitter connects to a variety of audiences (Mainly a younger market) and engages direct worldwide access. This allows you to build relationships and talk to individuals quickly and efficiently.
It is also a large listening and research platform where you can see trending topics and find important and leadership information about employer and company profiles.
*Build conversation, share posts and comment questions. (Develop a personal or professional rapport)
Instagram is a crowded place for creative’s displaying their work, however you can utilize geo-tagging to localise your work to attract clients and companies. Comment on other accounts and specific subject and brand content that grabs attention and builds rapport.
*Upload a time-lapse of a creative project, create a professional video of your brand and image.
*Play with post interface, your profile can aesthetically express your visual identity and service/work if you create a composition developed around for example a 9 post frame (square).
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is a method of improving quality and efficiency in search result rankings. Google displays links to pages it considers relevant and authoritative, measured by quality and number of links from other web pages.
Businesses can use this to improve visibility amongst multiple results and searches (e.g. When ‘graphic design’ there is a possibility your business could come higher up within the relayed results)