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Design Blog Posts

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

Marketing / November 10, 2016 The Free Growth Tools I Recommend For Modern Businesses to Grow & Scale
The Free Growth Tools I Recommend For Modern Businesses to Grow & Scale

By Dharmesh Shah

If you're growing a company, chances are you're challenged with choosing the right tools to help you grow.

Both at HubSpot and at other businesses I've helped advise, I've seen marketing and sales teams experiment with all sorts of different tools they've hoped would drive growth. Some of these tools did help the team grow. Others slowed growth down or blocked it altogether.

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Marketing / November 3, 2016 The Top 10 Conversion Lessons One Agency Learned After Critiquing 100+ Websites
The Top 10 Conversion Lessons One Agency Learned After Critiquing 100+ Websites

By Ramona Sukhraj

When it comes to website design, creating a page that is visually appealing, aligned with your brand, and optimized for lead generation is no easy task. After all, there are a lot of mistakes you can make in the process.

That's why -- for almost two years now -- my team here at IMPACT Branding & Design has been hosting a monthly live website critique called Website Throwdown.

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Marketing / October 31, 2016 The Ultimate Guide to Creating Shareable Infographics Using PowerPoint or Keynote
The Ultimate Guide to Creating Shareable Infographics Using PowerPoint or Keynote

By Brian Downard

Want to learn how to plan, publish, and promote viral infographics?

You’re in the right place. But let’s start by making something clear: If you’re thinking, “I’m not a natural designer" or “I’ve never made an infographic before,” you’re not alone.

However, instead of making excuses, answer this: Have you ever made a presentation in PowerPoint or Keynote?

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Marketing / October 21, 2016 5 Key Takeaways From an Analysis of 200+ Popular Pinterest Infographics
5 Key Takeaways From an Analysis of 200+ Popular Pinterest Infographics

By Eugene Woo

The following is an excerpt from our free resource, How to Create Beautiful Infographics. If you'd like to download the full guide, click here.

Chances are, if you’re reading this, you’re creating an infographic to use on social media or a marketing campaign. If you’re creating the infographic for marketing purposes, you’ve got one more step, and that’s promoting it.

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Marketing / October 17, 2016 8 Helpful Resources for Creating Beautiful Infographics
8 Helpful Resources for Creating Beautiful Infographics

By Amanda Zantal-Wiener

Visuals have a huge impact in marketing. Not only do they make content more sharable -- 40 times as much -- but they help us retain information. When details are paired with an image, we remember 55% more of it.

That can be pulled off with infographics -- the nifty images that visually break down complex statistics. They're customizable, sharable, and they're easier to create than you might think.

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Marketing / October 14, 2016 How to Generate Leads From the Most Popular Pages on Your Website
How to Generate Leads From the Most Popular Pages on Your Website

By Lindsay Kolowich

From blog posts to landing pages to job postings, your website may be made up of tens, hundreds; even thousands of individual pages.

But regardless how many pages you have on your site, you'll find that the vast majority of your traffic comes in to a few, very specific pages -- often your homepage, your "About" page, your "Contact Us" page, and maybe one or two of your most popular blog posts.

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Marketing / October 12, 2016 14 of the Best Product Page Design Examples We've Ever Seen
14 of the Best Product Page Design Examples We've Ever Seen

By Lindsay Kolowich

If you look at how product pages take shape across different companies, it's clear that they run the gamut. Some go for the direct approach, displaying an image of a product and explaining why someone should buy it. Other companies create elaborate pages with moving parts and fancy coded elements.

Of course, some companies fare better than others at creating delightful product pages.

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Marketing / October 5, 2016 16 of the Best Examples of Beautiful Blog Design
16 of the Best Examples of Beautiful Blog Design

By Lindsay Kolowich

According to a recent U.K. survey, bloggers have ranked as the third most trustworthy source of information, following only friends and family. That's right -- bloggers are trusted more than celebrities, journalists, brands, and politicians.

But how do you get people to fall in love with your blog in the first place? (Aside from remarkable content, of course.)

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Marketing / September 28, 2016 17 of the Best Brands on Instagram Right Now
17 of the Best Brands on Instagram Right Now

By Lindsay Kolowich

For a while now, it's been clear that Instagram isn't just a social network for selfies and brunch pics. In fact, Instagram sees a whopping 500 million users -- a 25% increase in audience size over less than a year.

In a world where visual content remains a crucial part of any business' marketing strategy, Instagram presents a unique opportunity to visually represent your brand, celebrate its personality, and keep it top-of-mind for all those users who scroll through their Instagram feeds every single day.

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Marketing / September 20, 2016 Phone Photography 101: How to Take Good Pictures With Your Phone
Phone Photography 101: How to Take Good Pictures With Your Phone

By Lindsay Kolowich

Before the days of smartphones -- if you can remember such a time -- taking a great photo was a labor-intensive process. You'd have buy a fancy camera and editing software for your desktop computer, and invest some serious time and energy into learning how to use them.

But thanks to our mobile devices and the editing apps that come with them, we can now take high quality photos and edit them without too many bells and whistles -- all from the same device that we use to make calls.

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Marketing / September 16, 2016 How to Create & Use Beautiful Infographics in Your Marketing [Live Master Class]
How to Create & Use Beautiful Infographics in Your Marketing [Live Master Class]

By Ellen Bartolino

Infographics are an awesome way to present information. When you combine data visualization, contextual information, and graphics, it's much easier to capture and maintain the attention of your audience.

However, creating well-designed infographics that actually help increase your traffic can be quite the process.

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Marketing / August 31, 2016 Data Visualization 101: How to Choose the Right Chart or Graph for Your Data
Data Visualization 101: How to Choose the Right Chart or Graph for Your Data

By Jami Oetting

You and I sift through a lot of data for our jobs. Data about website performance, sales performance, product adoption, customer service, marketing campaign results ... the list goes on. 

When you manage multiple content assets, such as social media or a blog, with multiple sources of data, it can get overwhelming.

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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

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.

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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.

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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 9, 2016 31 Call-to-Action Examples You Can't Help But Click
31 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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