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Design Blog Posts

Discover tips, tools, and processes for becoming a better designer.

Marketing / August 26, 2016 15 of the Best Email Marketing Campaign Examples You've Ever Seen
15 of the Best Email Marketing Campaign Examples You've Ever Seen

By Lindsay Kolowich

BestEmailCampaigns.jpg

At one point or another, we all need inspiration to do our jobs better. It doesn't matter whether you're a marketing veteran who has navigated through years of changing technology or a newbie fresh out of college -- we all need examples of outstanding content. It helps us get through creative ruts, make the case to our boss for experimentation, and improve our own marketing.

Most of the time, inspiration is easy to find because most marketing content is publicly available. You can scour the internet or go on your favorite social network to see what your connections ... Read More

Marketing / August 22, 2016 How to 'Un-Stock' Your Photography: 8 Examples That'll Change the Way You Choose Photos
How to 'Un-Stock' Your Photography: 8 Examples That'll Change the Way You Choose Photos

By Brada Barassi

With 46% of marketers reporting that photography is critical to their current marketing and storytelling strategies, it should come as no surprise that quality photos are in high demand.

Trouble is, most commercially available photos on the internet were taken to visualize broad overall concepts rather than concrete messages. That means they can be used in all sorts of campaigns ... but also end up looking generic.

Read More
Marketing / August 15, 2016 The Digital Marketer's Guide to Finding & Optimizing Images [Free Ebook]
The Digital Marketer's Guide to Finding & Optimizing Images [Free Ebook]

By Lucy Alexander

It’s difficult to communicate emotion through just text -- and as a digital marketer, you’re always looking for ways to make more meaningful connections with your audience.

Images make it easier for you to bring your stories to life, as well as overcome linguistic and cultural barriers between you and your audience. If you’re not using graphics to your advantage, you’re missing out on a huge chance to make a personal connection with your audience and increase engagement with your content as a result.

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Marketing / August 2, 2016 Typography Tutorial for Beginners: Everything You Need to Learn Typography Basics
Typography Tutorial for Beginners: Everything You Need to Learn Typography Basics

By Brittany Leaning

Like many of you, I'm a trained marketer and more of a "do-it-yourself" designer.

Sure, I read through The Marketer’s Crash Course in Visual Content Creation and learned some sweet PowerPoint and Photoshop tricks that have helped me a lot with my content marketing job. But I really wanted to take my design skills to the next level.

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Marketing / July 25, 2016 28 of the Best Instagrams to Follow for Design Inspiration
28 of the Best Instagrams to Follow for Design Inspiration

By Lindsay Kolowich

What if I told you you could visit an art gallery ... from the comfort of your own home? Or from a bus seat on your commute to work? Or while you're taking a break for lunch?

If you follow the right people, that's what Instagram can do for you. There are a lot of really talented artists and designers out there who use Instagram as a sort of mini art gallery -- a social portfolio, if you will.

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Marketing / July 7, 2016 23 Brilliant Twitter Cover Photo Examples From Real Brands
23 Brilliant Twitter Cover Photo Examples From Real Brands

By Lindsay Kolowich

What do you think to yourself when you see someone's Twitter avatar is the default image of an egg? Chances are, you probably assume they are either inactive, a fake account, or someone not worth following.

While almost all businesses understand that the egghead approach isn't doing them any justice, they often fail to understand that a plain, flat Twitter cover photo can be equally as off-putting to potential followers.

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Marketing / July 5, 2016 How to Pick the Perfect Color Combination for Your Data Visualization
How to Pick the Perfect Color Combination for Your Data Visualization

By Bethany Cartwright

Choosing any color scheme -- whether for graphics, websites, brands, etc. -- is a challenge in and of itself. That choice of colors sets the mood for anything and everything you create.

When it comes to data visualization, color is especially important. The color scheme sets the tone of the imagery and each color serves to represent a unique piece of information.

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Marketing / June 23, 2016 The Science Behind Design: 8 Psychology Principles to Apply to Your Next Project
The Science Behind Design: 8 Psychology Principles to Apply to Your Next Project

By Bethany Cartwright

When it comes down to it, design is all about making choices. Each color, shape, line, font, text, and graphic you use will ultimately influence the message you're trying to get across.

I’ve often been in conversations with people who know they should get better at design, but they don’t feel they have a “natural sense” for creativity.

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Marketing / June 17, 2016 18 of the Best Examples of Mobile Website Design
18 of the Best Examples of Mobile Website Design

By Rachel Sprung

Now more than ever, businesses are focusing on creating delightful mobile website experiences.

After all, Google has been heavily favoring mobile-friendly websites since they updated their algorithm in April 2015 and again in March 2016. And that's crucial, seeing as there have been more Google search queries on smartphones than on desktop computers and tablets for over a year now.

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Marketing / June 8, 2016 The Free Design Templates You Need to Create Stunning Visual Marketing Content
The Free Design Templates You Need to Create Stunning Visual Marketing Content

By Pamela Vaughan

Visual content is in high demand. Just about every piece of content you create can be enhanced by some kind of visual element. In fact, content with relevant images gets a whopping 94% more views than content without relevant images.

And in social media, visuals pretty much make or break your presence. According to Buffer, visual content is more than 40X more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content.

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Marketing / May 31, 2016 11 Useful Photoshop Tutorials That'll Help You Work Faster
11 Useful Photoshop Tutorials That'll Help You Work Faster

By Bethany Cartwright

There’s no doubt that Photoshop is an incredibly powerful tool for marketers. Photoshop has thousands of features, tools, settings, and shortcuts that have drastically changed and shaped graphic design and photo editing over the last few decades.

With the sophistication of today’s design capabilities, however, comes the hassle of learning and staying up-to-date on Photoshop’s features.

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Marketing / May 16, 2016 9 of the Best Photoshop Filters & Plugins You Can Use for Free
9 of the Best Photoshop Filters & Plugins You Can Use for Free

By Erik Devaney

There's no denying that Adobe Photoshop is a powerful photo editing tool, with loads of built-in features and effects. In fact, if you're a marketer with little (or zero) photography or graphic design experience, Photoshop can sometimes feel a bit overwhelming.

Oppositely, however, if you've spent years learning the ins and outs of Photoshop, you might now be arriving at a point where you feel like you've exhausted all of Photoshop's built-in benefits.

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Marketing / May 11, 2016 The Power of Visual Storytelling: 15 Stunning Examples to Inspire You
The Power of Visual Storytelling: 15 Stunning Examples to Inspire You

By Nichole Elizabeth DeMeré

Before the days of neon lights and marquee signs, business owners had to get creative when it came to advertising their establishments. In fact, wine bars in ancient Rome used to hang bunches of vine leaves outside their door as a nod to the God of Wine, Bacchus. And when weather conditions left them with a short supply of vine leaves, barkeeps turned to bushes -- inns called Bush, or Bull & Bush, still exist today.

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Marketing / May 6, 2016 The ABCs of Compelling Visual Ads [Infographic]
The ABCs of Compelling Visual Ads [Infographic]

By Carly Stec

This year, 73% of content creators plan to prioritize creating more engaging content, while 55% plan to prioritize creating visual content, according to a report from Content Marketing Institute. 

This means more infographics, more social media images, more video content, and more visually appealing advertisements. What constitutes as visually appealing advertisement?

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Marketing / May 3, 2016 17 Things People Absolutely Hate About Your Website
17 Things People Absolutely Hate About Your Website

By Lindsay Kolowich

One of the tenets of inbound marketing is to not annoy people. So why is it that many websites are still chock full of the elements that so many visitors have bemoaned over and over?

Perhaps with the sheer excitement (or terror, depending on your personality) that comes with designing your own website, all of the user experience quirks that have driven you crazy over the years escape your mind.

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Marketing / April 22, 2016 Time for a Website Overhaul? A Look Into the Redesign Timelines of 6K+ Businesses
Time for a Website Overhaul? A Look Into the Redesign Timelines of 6K+ Businesses

By Jeffrey Vocell

Redesigning your website is a great way to get a fresh start. But how do you know when it's actually time to get the ball rolling on an overhaul? 

Many times, a redesign begins when an executive or marketer begins to feel like the website is outdated. This can especially be true if a competitor, or someone in an adjacent industry recently redesigned their site. 

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Marketing / April 13, 2016 How to Create an Infographic Using Poll & Survey Data [Infographic]
How to Create an Infographic Using Poll & Survey Data [Infographic]

By Carly Stec

A well-executed survey has the power to uncover insights that you can use to hone your strategy, shape your product, gauge customer satisfaction, and more. 

While it's temping to share your findings right away, sometimes it's better to pause and reflect. By taking time to find the story in your data, you might find a way to share your findings that is far more valuable than a bunch of jumbled stats and takeaways. 

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Marketing / March 30, 2016 How to Photoshop Your Coworkers Into Any Situation: A Step-by-Step Guide
How to Photoshop Your Coworkers Into Any Situation: A Step-by-Step Guide

By Erik Devaney

As someone who dabbles in Photoshop, I often get odd requests from coworkers asking if I can take person A and insert them into situation B. Usually, it's for an internal slide deck, or a Wiki post, or for a Slack-related practical joke.

And while there are usually a bajillion more important things I could be doing when these requests come in, I nearly always say yes -- with the caveat that I'll spend a maximum of 15–20 minutes working on it.

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Marketing / March 21, 2016 The Ultimate Collection of Free Content Marketing Templates
The Ultimate Collection of Free Content Marketing Templates

By Anum Hussain

I joined HubSpot in September 2011 as a blogger. At the time, I needed to know how to write and educate through my writing.

Flash forward to today. My content role has evolved eons beyond what I could ever have imagined. To conquer lead gen, I mastered ebook production. To help spread data, I learned how to create infographics.

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Marketing / March 9, 2016 30 Call-to-Action Examples You Can't Help But Click
30 Call-to-Action Examples You Can't Help But Click

By Brittany Leaning

Think about all the times you've signed up for things in your life. Did you once download Evernote? Dropbox? Spotify? Maybe you've even taken a class on General Assembly.

Each one of these signups is likely a result of an effective call-to-action.

And it's really important to guide your visitors through the buying journey using strategic calls-to-action (CTAs).

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Marketing / March 9, 2016 10 Little Ways to Make Your Data Far More Compelling
10 Little Ways to Make Your Data Far More Compelling

By Ari Plaut

It's that time again. You've spent countless hours creating and executing a campaign, and now you're finally ready to present the results to your boss. You've rehearsed your presentation meticulously, and feel great about the whole deck ... except that one slide that shows a report that doesn't quite make sense.

Even though the rest of your data is compelling, you know your boss will somehow find a way to focus on the one chart that isn't. 

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Marketing / March 4, 2016 11 of the Best Microsite Examples We've Ever Seen
11 of the Best Microsite Examples We've Ever Seen

By Lindsay Kolowich

They say the best things often come in small packages. Think about it: jewelry, Snapchats, books, the keys to a brand new car ... all of these things support this notion. 

And with our attention spans shrinking below that of a goldfish, it should come as no surprise that we're beginning to crave more focused content at a smaller scale, too. 

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Marketing / March 3, 2016 3 Essential Ecommerce Design Elements for Successful Stores
3 Essential Ecommerce Design Elements for Successful Stores

By Amanda Farmer


Think of the most successful salespeople you know. They’re equal parts artist and scientist, skilled at building trust, telling their products’ stories in a persuasive way, answering and overcoming objections and, finally, closing the deal.

If you’re an ecommerce company, your website is your salesperson. And like a good salesperson, your site should bring your brand’s personality to the forefront while leveraging a few fundamental tactics of artful online dealmaking:

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Marketing / February 25, 2016 Is Your Mobile Website Stressing People Out? A Simple Guide to Improving Page Load Time
Is Your Mobile Website Stressing People Out? A Simple Guide to Improving Page Load Time

By Jeffrey Vocell

When is the last time you visited a website on your smartphone and had to wait for the page to load?

According to Akamai, 73% of mobile users say they've encountered a website that was slow to load. Many times, this happens when users aren't on WiFi and are relying on a cellular connection.

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Marketing / February 17, 2016 24 Conversion Rate Optimization Tools for Research, Feedback, Analytics & More
24 Conversion Rate Optimization Tools for Research, Feedback, Analytics & More

By Katherine Boyarsky

Believe it or not, driving traffic to your website -- albeit challenging -- isn't enough to sustain your business. In an effort to truly leverage that investment in traffic, marketers must use conversion rate optimization, or CRO, to convince said traffic to complete a desired action.

In some cases, these optimization techniques might be as basic as changing the color of a CTA. In other cases, there's a lot more that can be improved. 

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Marketing / February 8, 2016 The Typography Trends Every Marketer Should Have on Their Radar [Infographic]
The Typography Trends Every Marketer Should Have on Their Radar [Infographic]

By Lindsay Kolowich

Just like an awesome photo or graphic can really make your design stand out, so can the right font. But the wrong font can also make your design stand out ... in a bad way. If you've ever seen a design with really out-of-date typography, you know what I mean.

But what makes a font or typography design out-of-date? What's "in" right now? Whether you're designing a one-off project or you're a seasoned designer, it's important to stay on top of typography trends so your work looks and feels current.

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Marketing / February 6, 2016 The Rebel's Guide to Design: 16 Rules You Can (And Should) Break [SlideShare]
The Rebel's Guide to Design: 16 Rules You Can (And Should) Break [SlideShare]

By Jami Oetting

This post originally appeared on HubSpot's Agency Post. To read more content like this, subscribe to Agency Post.

Don't use more than three typefaces. Follow a grid. Keep it simple. 

You've heard these common design rules repeated over and over again -- by your teacher, your art director, and even that friend who uses Microsoft paint to design his band posters.

Read More
Marketing / February 2, 2016 195+ Perfectly Optimized Design Templates for Email, Infographic & More [Free Templates]
195+ Perfectly Optimized Design Templates for Email, Infographic & More [Free Templates]

By Niti Shah

We all know visual marketing works. Visual content is 40X more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content. Not to mention, infographics are Liked or shared on social media 3X more than any other type of content. 

The problem is, it can be hard to actually create these visuals -- especially when you're a small marketing team with too much to do and no designer on hand. 

Read More
Marketing / February 1, 2016 Data Storytelling 101: Helpful Tools for Gathering Ideas, Designing Content & More
Data Storytelling 101: Helpful Tools for Gathering Ideas, Designing Content & More

By Nichole Elizabeth DeMeré

It's an exciting time to be a content marketer. But it's also a challenging time.

As more companies continue to jump on the inbound marketing bandwagon, the influx of content seems to be turning into a bit of a traffic jam. And few things have the power to cut through this noise like data storytelling.

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Marketing / January 28, 2016 10 Types of Visual Content Your Brand Should Be Creating Right Now [Infographic]
10 Types of Visual Content Your Brand Should Be Creating Right Now [Infographic]

By Carly Stec

Over the past few years, we've seen content become more visual. Marketers have experimented with infographics, videos, and more -- and they've made plans to keep it up this year.

In fact, 73% of content creators plan to prioritize creating more engaging content in 2016, and 55% plan to prioritize creating visual content.

Read More
Marketing / January 27, 2016 How to Make an Infographic in Under an Hour [15 Free Infographic Templates]
How to Make an Infographic in Under an Hour [15 Free Infographic Templates]

By Lindsay Kolowich

Wouldn't it be great if creating infographics was as simple as writing regular ol' text-based blog posts? Unfortunately, the reality is that making visual content like this usually takes a lot more time, effort, and let's face it -- skill -- than the written word. Usually.

But considering the popularity and effectiveness of visual content in marketing today, you can't just afford to throw in the towel.

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Marketing / January 15, 2016 The Infographic Design Cheat Sheet: 5 Layouts That'll Make Your Life Easier [Free Templates]
The Infographic Design Cheat Sheet: 5 Layouts That'll Make Your Life Easier [Free Templates]

By Lindsay Kolowich

Infographics have become one of the most powerful tools in a marketer's arsenal.

Content marketers often find themselves wanting to explain complex topics to their audience in a way that's easy to understand. Not only do infographics help break these topics into digestible chunks of information, but they do just that in a content format that people actually like reading.

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Marketing / January 13, 2016 The Top 8 Design Trends to Watch This Year [Infographic]
The Top 8 Design Trends to Watch This Year [Infographic]

By Lindsay Kolowich

The past few years have been exciting ones for great design.

Some of the web design trends from last year have proven themselves popular enough to stick around in 2016, like flat design, background videos, and robust mobile app design. More importantly, we've seen the rise of a few new trends that marketers and designers alike need to stay on top of, such as card-based interface design.

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Marketing / January 12, 2016 The Ultimate Cheat Sheet of Photo & Image Sizes on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & Other Social Networks [Infographic]
The Ultimate Cheat Sheet of Photo & Image Sizes on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & Other Social Networks [Infographic]

By Lindsay Kolowich

When you're designing cover photos, graphics, and other social media assets, sometimes knowing the bare bones image dimensions isn't enough.

What if you wanted to place text or an arrow on your Facebook cover photo without it getting covered by the profile photo? And what about the shared link thumbnails on Facebook or in-stream photos on Twitter ... how big should those be?

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Marketing / January 7, 2016 How to Choose the Perfect Fonts for Every Project: A Detailed Guide [Infographic]
How to Choose the Perfect Fonts for Every Project: A Detailed Guide [Infographic]

By Lindsay Kolowich

When it comes to delighting people with design, details matter -- a lot. The fonts you choose every time you lay out an email, an ebook, or an image for social media end up giving your marketing a polish that makes a big difference.

Trouble is, with so many options to choose from, finding the right one isn't always as obvious as we'd like it to be. Thankfully, there are a few guiding principles out there to simplify the selection process.

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