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July 31, 2013 Newsletter

Hi <<First Name>>,

For those of you who don't know, the big move went very smoothly and we've been here in Florida for 3 months now. We're now located in Palm Harbor area, which is just west of Tampa and about 20 minutes from the warm and beautiful waters of the Gulf. The weather is amazing, the people are wonderful, and there's just so much to do! But no worries, we are still putting in our full work weeks, with all our amazing VT & NY customers keeping us busy, and are gaining new customers in Florida. Although we will admit it's a tad more difficult getting to the office on time when it's 82 and gorgeous out every morning.

We've been very busy, as you can see by our list of the newest sites to the left, but we hope to get back on track with quarterly newsletters.

Facebook & Twitter Links in Print Ads

Would you put an icon of a phone instead of your phone number in a print ad, and make someone look it up?

We were designing an ad for a client this week, and he questioned whether or not we should add the Facebook and Twitter icons in it. It's a great question. If you look in print advertising these days, you see those icons everywhere. If you don't add these icons, you'll probably feel 'unhip, uncool, and not running with the in crowd'. That being said, I'm going to surprise you and tell you why you absolutely should NOT put these icons in print advertising (Sorry Andrew).

Facebook and Twitter links in a website are easy - after someone is done browsing your website they can click on your social media links and check out your Facebook page or your latest Tweets. One click and they're there.

Now imagine seeing a Facebook and Twitter icon in an ad. What's your next step? You have to put down the newspaper, go to your computer, call up Facebook, do a search for the business, maybe click on the wrong page because there's more than one business with that name. Twitter is even harder - if you've ever searched for a specific business or person in twitter - there are all kinds of variations and it can be difficult and frustrating to find who you're looking for. For example, If you search for 'Off the Page Creations' on Facebook - I am not the gun toting roller derby girl that appears.

Another aspect to consider - is your Facebook and Twitter page more up to date, and does it supply more information than your website? If so, than you should send them there (and it's time to update your website). If you feel it's important to give them the chore to go to your social media sites, than you need to have the facebook address and twitter handle listed there. At least then they'll know how to find you.

Here's a great article that talks about this and other tips in more depth.


A new way to share text and photos through the 'ShareThis' on your site

You may start seeing a little scissors icon with an informational (i) icon near photos and text on some websites. This is a new social sharing feature that ShareThis is implementing, called Snapsets. The (i) lets users know how to use this new feature.

We were lucky to be chosen as a Snapsets beta tester on one of our websites, so we got to test this out firsthand. Snapsets can be a nice way to easily share text or photos with your friends. You just highlight or hover over text or an image and it allows you to click it and post it to your Snapset page, where you can either share it with your friends, or keep it for future reference. This is also trackable so you can find out what content people are sharing.

The down side is, and the reason for testing first I'm sure, is that the icons show up on every image. For example, if your navigation is made up of images instead of text, it would automatically get the snapset share icon, and obviously you don't want someone to share a photo of one of your navigational buttons.

They have some bugs to work out, but the potential is there for easy sharing. They are randomly choosing websites to implement this on, and eventually it will be on all websites that have the ShareThis icons. If you do notice this on your website, and you decide you don't like the way it looks or acts because there's a lot of photos, we can easily disable it with 1 line of code.

Click here for more information on Snapsets.

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