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Six Tips for Launching a Brand on Shoe String Budget

Here are my six tips to help you launch your new business, product and brand on a budget: 1. Focus On The Product When you are first starting out, don’t worry or spend too much time on the marketing or messaging side of things. Make sure the product and/or service is strong and is as close to perfect as possible before investing time and money into promotion. If the product is good, it will promote itself. Let the product do most of the talking. 2.  Advocates & Testimonials In line with the above, you should look to build and collect advocates of your product and brand as soon as possible. Testimonials and word of mouth are some of the most potent forms of advertising you and your brand can take advantage of. People listen to other people – especially those they trust (family, friends, colleagues, even vloggers!). If my friend recommends a product or service to me, when making my next purchase decision, that recommendation will hold a lot of weight. If a brand tells me their product or service is good via marketing or a promotion, I won’t take anywhere near as much notice. 3.  Customer Service Providing good customer service is often just as powerful as having a good product. On the reverse, we all know that poor customer service is one of the public’s biggest complaints about modern day consumer brands. As a smaller business that is launching a new brand, make sure quality customer service is at the fore front of your focus. This might mean hiring relevant staff to provide dedicated customer service as you grow – customer demands and issues will increase as you do. In the beginning, take advantage of being a smaller outfit and try and provide personalised customer service. It will help increase the number of loyal, long term customers. 4.  Collaborate Collaborations have a number of business benefits, firstly they can provide a cash boost to a low budget start-up and more importantly they can increase brand awareness. Whilst you may have to offer them exclusivity, the long term benefits often outweigh the restrictions. Increasing awareness is an essential part of growing a brand in the early life-cycle of a new brand. Partnerships help increase productivity, via the sharing of knowledge and expertise and can even help business owners obtain better rates for production/servicing costs further down the chain. 5.  Use Your Resources Make your product do some of the promotion and selling work for you. Ensure the way you package the product or offer a service that stand outs and can be distinctively recognised by consumers. Try to understand the pain points of your target market and do whatever you can to help solve it. Don’t forget to make use of free tools like social media and Google (YouTube, Places, Analytics, etc), manage them carefully and effectively. When used right, these tools can work wonders and provide a lot of useful customer information. 6.  Think Outside The Box Don’t be afraid to try different options and get creative in using different free tools and channels. Create some interesting and memorable content, tell a story, consumers want to feel a connection with the brands they purchase from. How did the brand come about? What made you want to start a business? Why did you choose the product you did? Consumers find these sort of questions interesting and providing answers helps consumers connect with your brand. If you would like any assistance in Brand Promotion, Awareness or Marketing, don’t hesitate to get in contact.

The Power of CSS3

Example: .yourdiv { -moz-border-radius: 5px; -webkit-border-radius: 5px; border-radius: 5px; } Border Radius Border radius can be added to an element to add a rounded corner. You can choose any corner from one to all corners. You can even turn a square into a circle by setting your border radius to half the width of your object. <div style=” width: 150px; height: 150px; border-radius: 100px; border: 3px solid #000000; background-color: #5cdb55;“></div> <div style=” width: 150px; height: 150px; border-radius: 60px; border: 3px solid #000000; background-color: #db5555;“></div> <div style=” width: 150px; height: 150px; border-radius: 60px 60px 60px 0; border: 3px solid #000000; background-color: #dbb455;“></div> Box Shadows Box shadows can be used to replace the drop shadow that you would use in photoshop. You can change the colour, opacity and the direction of the shadow. <div style=” width: 150px; height: 150px; border-radius: 0 60px 60px 60px; border: 3px solid #000000; background-color: #9155db; box-shadow: 0 5px 10px 0 rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.9);“></div> <div style=” width: 150px; height: 150px; border-radius: 0 60px 0 60px; border: 3px solid #000000; background-color: #db55cd; box-shadow: 5px 10px 5px 10px rgba(0, 0, 0, 2);“></div> <div style=” width: 150px; height: 150px; border-radius: 0 60px 60px 0; border: 3px solid #000000; background-color: #55d9db; box-shadow: inset 10px 10px 5px 0px rgba(0,0,0,0.75);“></div> Shadow Box .tpc_adv_box { width:100%; height:200px; background:#898989; margin: 0 auto 80px auto; background-image: url(‘https://www.generateuk.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/subscribe_HOME_BANNER-1.png’); background-repeat: no-repeat; -moz-background-size: cover; -webkit-background-size: cover; -o-background-size: cover; background-size: cover; } .shadw { position: relative; } .shadw:after { transform: rotate(8deg); right: 10px; left: auto; } .tpc_adv_box.shadw p { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; text-align: center; padding-top: 70px; margin-top: 0; font-size: 40px; color: #FFFFFF; -moz-text-shadow: 2px 5px 3px #666666; -webkit-text-shadow: 2px 5px 3px #666666; -o-text-shadow: 2px 5px 3px #666666; text-shadow: 2px 5px 3px #666666; } .shadw:before, .shadw:after { z-index: -1; position: absolute; content: “”; bottom: 25px; left: 10px; width: 50%; top: 80%; max-width:300px; background: #777; box-shadow: 0 35px 20px #777; transform: rotate(-8deg); } Creating Buttons Below are a few practical examples of how to use border-radius and box-shadow to create buttons for use on your website. Send .tpc_button_one { text-align:center; width:130px; height:20px; padding:10px; border-radius: 10px; border:3px solid #000000; background-color:#CCCCCC; box-shadow: 1px rgba(0, 0, 0, 1); font-size: 20px; line-height:20px; font-weight:700; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; cursor: pointer; } .tpc_button_one:hover { color: #FFFFFF; box-shadow: inset 2px 1px 2px 1px rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.8); } Go .tpc_button_two { text-align:center; width:150px; height:90px; padding:60px 0 0 0; border-radius: 75px; border:3px solid #000000; background-color:red; box-shadow: 1px rgba(0, 0, 0, 1); font-size: 40px; line-height:20px; font-weight:700; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; cursor: pointer; } .tpc_button_two:hover { color: #FFFFFF; background-color:green; box-shadow: inset 2px 1px 2px 1px rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.8); } Enter .tpc_button_three { text-align:center; width:130px; height:20px; padding:10px; border-radius: 5px 0 5px 0; border:0px solid #000000; background-color: #06C; box-shadow: 1px rgba(0, 0, 0, 1); font-size: 20px; line-height:20px; font-weight:700; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; cursor: pointer; } .tpc_button_three:hover { color: #FFFFFF; background-color: #06E; box-shadow: 2px 1px 2px 1px rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.8); }
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Law Firm Marketing: 8 Top Tips by Generate UK

Tip 1- Give it The Time it Needs Being successful in marketing and having activity that brings a sustainable ROI is something that does need time. Whenever you instruct a successful marketeer or any good agency, this should always be the first thing that they should say. Looking to do marketing on a whim, or a few hours here and there at night just won’t work. The need to service existing clients will always be a factor when marketing any company. But always have in your head, ‘What about those next set of clients’. Once you’ve serviced the 10 clients you have this week, you need to make sure you have clients the week after and the one after that etc. Particularly in the Law Firm industry, it can be a lot about the ‘brand’. Having 4 social channels that haven’t been posted on for 6 months, will affect the ‘brand’. If you are trying to portray how diligent your law firm is, but you can’t find time to post on your social channels, the brand messaging is not consistent. You need to give your outbound marketing the time it needs, or it could actually end up having a detrimental effect on your business. Next time you’re rushing a social post out at 9.45pm on a Tuesday night, stop and think, is that really going to help your brand? Tip 2- Simply be Current… With Your Marketing In this sector there are many external aspects that can and will affect your business – None more so than the ever continuous changes in laws and/or the world that we live in more generally. As an example, if a new law in the UK has recently changed, why not comment on it? Be the first to market with some interesting and educational content around the change. Producing a blog 1 year after the change vote, just won’t cut the mustard. There is a big requirement to be at the forefront of the industry, meaning that you will need to be really reactive with the marketing that you do. This links with our next tip… Tip 3- Drive Thought Leadership How can you let potential new customers know you are experts in law, without having to charge them? Or having to say it yourself?  There’s no better way to portray your knowledge as a lawyer, than by showcasing this via content within your marketing portfolio. Blogs, email newsletters and social posts can assist and add to that ‘thought leadership’ tag. If you link tip 2 with tip 3, this will give you a very basic approach and objectives for your marketing strategy. Through continuous thought leadership you will create a buzz around your company and keep users coming back to your site/platforms for further updates. Rather than reading one blog, you want to hook them in to read 3 or 4 blogs. In addition to that, content is king in Google’s eyes (as we all know), so content marketing can improve your website’s overall SEO visibility. You are then covering two bases with one activity. Tip 4- Fully Integrated Marketing Approach This approach is often a standard approach for all companies when looking to market their brand. But, particularly if you are marketing your law firm, this can be a great tactic to market. For those of you who don’t know, a fully integrated approach is defined as the following: According to Marketing Schools– “Integrated marketing is a marketing strategy that stresses the importance of a consistent, seamless, multi-dimensional brand experience for the consumer. This means that each branding effort – across television, radio, print, Internet, and in person – is presented in a similar style that reinforces the brand’s ultimate message”. It’s about the ideology of carrying across all marketing messaging, ethos, and consistency to every channel that you market on. If on social media you are talking about divorce, but you have no page on your website about divorce, or no print collateral on divorce, you are dropping the ball – It can be as simple as that! There needs to be a consistent flow across all marketing channels providing users with multiple touch points. It’s the old fashioned marketing approach of the ‘7 touch points’. Needing to hit the customer on 7 different channels and occasions before they convert. Furthermore, when a need arises for a customer, there is often a long search phase… Particularly if it concerns a non-habitual product (or service), similar to types of services that a law firm may provide. The customer will go to many different marketing channels of yours to understand a bit more about your company. Therefore, if 1 channel isn’t portraying the same brand messaging as another, this is where it can all fall flat. Tip 5- Multiple Channels of Communications- Choosing The Right One This also links with the point above and below tip 6. If you are a Law Firm, 9 times out of 10, you will have multiple areas of law that your cover. From personal injury, through to commercial property. Therefore do not be afraid to have different channels and tweak your messaging to communicate with each different end user. The supermarket analogy is great example to showcase this thought: “If you go to the shop and are looking for a new range of biscuits in a supermarket (as an example). You have their basics range and on the shelf above that, there is a high end range. These are all marketed and stored in the same aisle, in the same store, but what’s different? It’s mostly the messaging, price and branding that is not the same. Supermarkets are targeting 2 different types of customers, therefore the marketing mix reflects that. Those who want the premium range, are looking for visual clues, so the gold writing, big price tag etc. The theory is, that the branding and messaging appeals to that target market. Although it’s the same type of product as the value range, stocked on the same shelf, in the same store… That brand and messaging is tailored to that market. It’s hitting home the right type of messaging for that end user. You can’t expect to charge high end prices, with low end packaging, or vice versa. So why would you do the same on your law firm website? Why would you brand divorce the same as a shareholders agreement page?”. Therefore don’t be afraid to do adopt the same approach when marketing your Law Firm. This process and philosophy doesn’t just appeal to supermarkets – All industries adopt this approach in one way or another. It’s segmenting out your business and each individual end user. Those who have injured themselves at work, want a different type of service to those who want a shareholders agreement. Don’t be afraid to optimise the branding/messaging depending on the area of law it concerns. Like the supermarket example, you’ll still have the same logo and it will be stored on the same website URL etc. But the terminology, the colours, the dialogue, the graphics may all be different, depending on the target market. Marketing your law firm (if you are full-service) is not a ‘one size fits all’ approach – it’s understanding your different customer segments first and then developing a strategy accordingly. Tip 6- Be Willing to Evolve In the marketing world there is a strong requirement to continuously evolve your offering. Each year there are many changes in the industry that you will need to consider: Lots of new entrants/competitors joining the market Marketing industry changes- With Google in particular New technologies- Devices or online capabilities Changes in user habits If you want your Law Firm to be at the forefront and an ‘early adopter’, it is important that you keep on top of the aspects identified above. One other tip here, is to set up Google alerts and receive latest news direct to your inbox. Not only will it save you time, but it may even help grow your ROI. Tip 7- Be Clever and Strategic With Your Marketing. Don’t just do marketing for the sake of it….. Research- Understand your customers, understand your competitors, understand new technologies. Rather than doing some email marketing ‘because it’s something to do’. Think about why you are doing it? What messaging should you use? What is the next action you want your potential customer to take? With marketing in the professional services area, always take a step back and think “Will this result in a lead for my business?”. Thinking that you should just ‘get something out there’ will end up costing you more money and you will have little to no ROI. Also make sure that you have the means to measure the success or failure of your marketing. Set-up tracking in Google Analytics, have bespoke telephone numbers for each campaign and so forth. You cannot be strategic with your marketing without research (up-front) and without performance measurement. Get the fundamentals in place first before expanding your marketing offering – Again this will allow you to maximise your return from marketing. Tip 8- Be Professional… But also add Brand Personality. When marketing a Law Firm, this is a common consideration and often something that is not done correctly. Although your company is within the professional services industry and thus the messaging needs to be kept at that professional level. Your customers are crying out for the human touch, as well a bit of personality. Gone are the days of hiding behind the brand and towing the professional/commercial line – it’s all about brand/employee personality and having this in your marketing portfolio. The increase and rise of social media, has been the stepping stone to this approach. It provides a platform to showcase a lot of in-house activity that previously would have gone un-seen. As an example, see one of our recent posts: A few pictures from our team day out at @NewburyRacing for the @mencap_charity #Charity #RaceDay pic.twitter.com/2G3xTnJMaM — Generate UK (@GenerateUK) March 7, 2016 It doesn’t mention the fact that we are a marketing agency, it doesn’t say we are the best at SEO (as an example). It allows potential customers to get a feel for the type of company we are. It’s all about getting that right balance but still being professional. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not best practice to show a photo on a company channel from a kebab shop at 3am on a Friday night. It’s about getting that balance between personality and professionality. As well as showing the right things. Don’t be afraid to add personality to your brand, after all, people do buy people! Summary Marketing any Law Firm can, and will be a difficult process. The wide ranging product offerings and the competitive market make it a difficult proposition. But, the potential rewards and value proposition of the services offered by Law Firms, make it completely financially viable. If you get your marketing right, you can really be successful in what you do. At the end of the day, it’s all about portraying and showcasing why the end user should pick your Law Firm, over the one down the road. If you can be ‘there’ when the need arises i.e. Google search, social media, email marketing and also pick up traction over a longer period of time through blog pieces, infographics, videos (the thought leadership process) you will be on the road to success. If you want to discuss these tips with one of our experts, and find out how we can help you market your Law Firm. Then get in contact with us today on 01635 887711
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How to Optimise Your Website Contact Forms and Increase Conversions

Read below and find out how making a few simple tweaks to your enquiry forms can boost conversions by up to 50%!   Put in as few fields in the form as possible… The easier the form is to fill out, the more likely users are to complete it. According to research carried out by HubSpot, when form fields were reduced from 4 to 3 their conversion rate improved by almost 50%. Forms should focus on getting leads into your sales funnel rather than on getting customer’s personal details. Remember, you can ask any additional questions later on in the sales process.   Don’t ask for a telephone number… Conversions are said to increase by up to 5% when the telephone number field is removed as more and more people are becoming reluctant to give out their personal information online. Depending on how important a post-click sales call is to your business, I would recommend avoiding this field at all costs. If you feel a telephone number is needed for your sales funnel, include this as an optional field on the form. Research has shown that placing the word optional next to the field with the phone number may decrease the abandonment rate by up to 35%!   Reduce the number of drop-down options… Research shows that conversion rates drop significantly when there are more than 3 fields in a drop down menu. Research also shows that having multiple drop-down menus within a form can decrease the conversion rate. Whilst we do recognise that drop-down menus can help ensure the enquiry is sent to the relevant department, we advise using them sparingly to ensure conversion rates remain high. Avoid using “Submit” as a CTA… Using the default text “Submit” on your form’s CTA button has been found to reduce conversions by up to 3%! The button text could be amended by either adding a single word after Submit e.g. Submit Form or Submit Now which is proven to improve conversions. Or, action verbs such as Go or Send could be used which will also result in a higher number of conversions than the standard Submit CTA.   Ensure forms can be easily completed on mobile devices… As mobile use continues to grow, more and more enquiries will be coming from users on mobile or tablets devices. Ensure that forms can be as easily completed on a mobile or tablet as they can on a desktop. Text should be easy-to-read and the form should fit within the mobile device’s screen. To check the mobile compatibility of your website contact forms, put the URL into Google’s mobile-friendly testing tool.   Don’t forget to ask users to sign up for you mailing list… Add the option to sign up for your mailing list within your website forms. This can be done by adding a box with the text tick here if you would like to sign up for our mailing list or a pop out form after the contact form has been sent. This is a great way to capture more customer data and to keep in contact with potential customers. The email lists can be used to send out company news, updates on products and services offered and any promotional offers.   Always test website changes… My final piece of advice is to Test, Test, Test! Before making any changes to your website take a benchmark of the current number of conversions the site has been receiving each month. This way you will be able to easily track the progress when the changes go live. Don’t forget, when undertaking any development work it’s best to do this on a staging site to ensure everything is in full working order before the live site is overwritten. If you are unsure about reducing your contact forms and are worried that your sales team will struggle with the reduction in information, use an A/B testing software to test the changes on 50% of your website traffic.   If you want to find out more about our tips for turning your website into a lean, mean converting machine, then drop us an email or give us a call on 01635 887711.   Sources: (Hubspot, Unbounce & Wpforms)
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Top 5 reasons why market share is an important metric in SEO

This can be done successfully by monitoring your market position, so you’re able to measure where you are in relation to the competition and make the necessary changes to get where you need to be. By only focusing on internal or vanity metrics, you have no real understanding of how you’re performing compared to your competitors, as your achievements are isolated in your own objectives and business goals. This prevents you from seeing the value of your marketing more broadly within your market. How to understand your market share We’ve been helping our clients understand their market share and achieve better results by performing in-depth research to analyse the potential traffic they could be receiving based on where they and their competitors rank on Google.   In order for us to understand market share, we have to calculate your ‘Share of Voice’. What is ‘Share of Voice’? Share of voice (SOV) is a way of measuring an amount of advertising presence or strength for a particular brand or product, or essentially: how much is our brand or product talked about compared to our competitors? It’s sometimes tricky to get a completely accurate, as we can only estimate how much your competitors are paying for advertising, or the amount of clicks they receive based on ranking position etc. With SOV, firstly you need to be aware of what keywords you and your competitors are ranking for and the value these can bring to your business. We recommend using tools such as SEMrush, Search Metrics, Search Console and reviewing all the keywords each business is appearing for in the top 10-20 positions, depending how deep you want to go.   Next, through grouping the keywords into similar themes you will then have a better understanding of the types of keywords you can rank for and the opportunities these can provide. You can also estimate how much potential traffic you’re receiving based on the estimated click-through rate of your organic ranking position for a particular keyword. There are many case studies about this, but they typically don’t vary much and are similar to the below.   You can continue deeper analysis from here, but this will get you started. Why market share is important Once you have the data to review your market share you gain substantial insight that can help your marketing. Here are our top 5 reasons why: 1. Understand the market better and see what your competitors are doing This is massive. You’ll see the performance of both you and your competitors and will be able to benchmark your activity. You can identify common keyword themes and maybe even drill it down to specific keywords. This can be used to inform all your marketing and any future campaigns. For example, if a particular theme is strong, are you ranking for a diverse and wide range of keywords that will enable you to compete within this space? Are you ranking for keywords that your competitors are weaker on? If so, think about what can you do to maximise this opportunity and ensure your share of voice dominates the market.   2. Identify new opportunities You may come across themes your competitors are ranking for that you are not. Not all of them will be relevant and this is important to note in itself. You can be so swept up in what your competitors are doing, it can be easy to forget about your own USPs, what you offer and that you may not be providing exactly the same products or services. However, where you do find your competitors have a higher share of voice in particular theme, ask yourself – is this relevant to me? What kind of keywords are they ranking for? What can I do to improve my own market position? This can be a great way to identify new topics and content you need to create or the potential untapped short or long-tail keywords can have on your business. 3. Quantify the impact of your strategies and tactics Understanding your market position can also help you measure your visibility before and after campaigns or focused ongoing marketing activities. It gives you a benchmark of what works and what doesn’t and can offer direction in how you can be more effective for future campaigns. 4. Ask questions on performance you didn’t think to ask Marketers love data. When you have real stats in front of you, it can put you in a position where you can ask meaningful questions and dig a little deeper to fully comprehend your performance. You might find information you weren’t expecting, and then you can ask questions about the value of this and how it can be used to enhance your marketing efforts. 5. Respond to emerging trends and judge total market growth or decline If you continuously update your research and add new competitors, you’ll also keep on top of emerging trends. You’ll be able to see whether some keywords are less effective compared to others and you can be proactive in making changes to your marketing plan. Make sure you complement this with other activity, such as looking at Google Trends, so you can capitalise on what your consumers are searching for and responding to. If you need help with understanding your share of voice or market position and improve your SEO visibility, don’t hesitate to contact our Generate UK team.

Putting User Experience (UX) at the heart of design for Web

This is not quite the case as during the application of our design process we undertake the responsibility to understand the requirements of the customer prior to considering the way something needs to look. ‘Form follows Function’ is the ultimate mantra for any good practice UX design. In addition to this we have integrated the latest technology to enable our clients to ‘experience’ the user journey based on the new designs, before they spend money on development. In the fast moving world of acronym’s, we may consider UX to be a relatively new thing. Not the case, as ‘User Experience’ has been a hugely active part of the design process for decades (if not centuries). User experience is the act of creating an emotionally positive connection between a human user and a digital or physical product.  The intention is to create a positive personal moment rather than a negative one which would result in a user no longer needing or wanting to use the specific product. One of the primary objectives in good UX is to understand the needs of both the user and the business who requires the product. Once the key requirements of both the user and the business are understood then the process moves to understanding the failings of an existing process. Understanding those failings will help to determine a positive path for a new user experience. UX in Web In the web world, the application of UX is to determine a seamless user journey where the person interacting with a website are provided a clean and easy flow through either the pages or a specific process. In the case of a process it may be to encourage a user to complete a enquiry form, complete an application or process through a transaction. Or to just engage with the business and pick up the phone. Within the design process we utilise UX best practice while creating a collection of wireframes. UX design always happens in the design process whether it is intentionally done or not. The process of considering a flow, user journey or interaction from one page to the next is the act of UX design and typically starts with a wire framing process to consider and understand the path a user will take. Step 1 – Wire framing The wire framing process typically starts with understanding the basic elements that are to be applied to specific pages. At this stage they may be referred to as templates. A template is usually a structure that may appear multiple times across a websites page count. Some websites may have more or less templates. In the case of large websites, the number of templates could range from 10-15+. Whereas a smaller website may only have 4 or 5. A good start point is to create a structure for the homepage where we will determine basic positions, sizes and structures for the site navigation, logo location, banner structure and content. All these elements will be laid out as visual blocks which will be labelled accordingly. It is important that a wireframe structure is laid out as accurately as possible ensuring that the pages dimensions and specific content blocks are set at the correct pixel dimensions. For example a call to action may be 250px x 100px (or locked to percentages for the purpose of responsive), visually recognised as a landscape rectangle. Alternatively a call to action sized at 100px x 250px will be a portrait rectangle. As well as basic structural elements, we must also consider navigation and buttons that will appear across the site. This may also include any rollover options that would occur with a specific element. As we work through the layout, the framework of the page begins to take shape and will start to clearly show the structure. It is also important to recognise a fold line for a website. A good rule of thumb is to add a fold line between 800 and 900 pixels down the page. In previous cases, clients have always required that the key content is clearly visible above the fold line. The negative issue here is that the area above the fold line tends to become cluttered with too much content. With the new age of mobile devices and responsive liquid layouts, this requirement is no longer the case, as it is more of a requirement to ensure a websites design is able to sit comfortably on either a desktop display or any variable screen size. Below is an example of a wireframe structure and its interaction from one page to the next. Part of our process is to focus our skills using the latest technology and software. Using the latest tools from Adobe, we are able to visualise and realise our user journey using Experience Design CC. Content below the fold line also has a level of importance but is usually considered as secondary to the key requirements of the sites page. The additional templates that will be designed would typically serve a specific purpose. These can range from a product category page, a generic page or a contact page template. These wireframes will carry some of the elements that have been used on the homepage, the header area for example, but will also contain new elements to display, such as contact forms or content blocks for text paragraphs. Once all the templates have been created for both desktop displays and mobile devices, the wireframes are shared with the client to ensure the brief has been met. The advantage of working in a wireframe format to begin with ensures that any changes that are required are quick and easy to perform. If the websites structure has been considered at the same time as the layout and the look and feel, then the process to amend can take longer. Step 2 – User Interface designing Once all wireframes are confirmed and agreed, then the process of visually designing out the website is initiated. This is also referred to as the User Interface (UI). At this point a thorough investigation into the clients brand guidelines (if available) is undertaken. A full review of the guidelines will ensure that any specific colours or fonts are being used correctly. In addition any specific structural requirements such as font padding and image exclusion zones are considered. This part of the process simply involves applying colour, style, imagery and content to a clean user friendly structure. Below is an example of a full realised design, based on the previously created wireframe. This stage is also where we may differentiate one area from another, where sub branding may be used. A good example of this can be seen below where sub brands from a parent brand reflect through different areas of the site. However, the subtle inclusion of an accent colour will be applied to specific items such as enquiry form buttons or dividing lines. To conclude, the purpose of the UX process is to understand the requirement of the companies product and ensure the user is able to interact with a seamless, intuitive and simple system that allows them to enjoy the experience that is presented to them. The ultimate primary objective is to ensure the user engages with the company through this positive experience.

Generate UK on : Computer Generated Photorealism

The advantages of these new technologies are endless. The ability to enhance, amend or remove products form large group shots and reproduce high quality pictures in seconds prior to large runs on busy print run schedules is priceless. Architects are using photorealism along with real sell their buildings using virtual reality and this carries time walk throughs to help over to the increasing popularity of photorealism in gaming. 75% of the IKEA catalogue utilises photorealistic interior imagery. Games such as Grand Theft Auto 5, Far Cry Primal and Tomb Raider are allowing Games to out sell movies in terms or raw box office ticket sales. Combining photorealism with cartoon animation in recent years has created a brand new style in movie production. Mixing large eyed playful characters with the realistic skin, hair and clothing material and textures, offering the audience a stimulating and more enriched viewing experience. Achieving Photorealistic CGI requires these 4 main building blocks: 1: Modelling/Sculpting Matching the scale and proportions of real world objects. Adhering to the realism of forms in the real world; for example their structure, shape and anatomy. 2: Materials Creating realistic materials which offer accurate representations of materials in the real world. Many factors must be considered including roughness, reflectivity, translucency, texture and surface imperfection to highlight a few. 3: Lighting Lighting that matches the colour direction and intensity of light in the real world. It’s always  important to consider the direction and intensity of the different lighting sources and to ensure the correct colour of the light. 4: Post-Processing To reproduce the imperfections produced by real life cameras including depth of field, motion blur and light distortion such as glares and flares. As a full service marketing agency, Generate UK feature 3D graphics as part of the design skill set. Photorealistic graphics have been used to accompany campaigns in the form of static assets, room interior shots and short animation explainer videos. If you would like more information on this service or if you are interested in finding out how we can provide 3D graphics to support your business needs, please get in touch.
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Google SERP Shake-Up: What You Need To Know

The Impact on Pay Per Click Search Ads Prior to the update, the desktop version of Google would display Search Ads both above, below and to the right of the organic results. Now, when you type in “Google” the right hand Ads no longer appear but an additional Ad can be found at the top of the results page; mirroring the appearance on mobile devices. Websites who are a part of the Google Search Network have also seen a change. Those with a previously active sidebar are no longer able to display Search Ads to the right of their web-pages. In industries where Ad competition is high, businesses may notice that the performance of their campaigns are dropping (most notably: reductions in Clicks, Impressions and Average Position). With the amount of Paid Ads per page reducing from 11 to 7, companies are reviewing their AdWords budgets and increasing their bids for the most competitive keywords in order to beat their rivals. A Change Influenced by User Interaction Research Over the years, several eye-tracking studies have been conducted to establish how users are engaging with Google’s search results. All of these studies conclude that the top left hand side of the result page, also known as the ‘Golden Triangle’, is a hot spot for user interaction. We believe this observation could be driving the recent changes. An SEO Shake-Up? With the implementation of an extra top ad, ‘organic’ results have now been pushed further down search pages. Although the update itself has not impacted the positioning of webpages within the organic listings, it does emphasise the importance of businesses monitoring and maximising both SEO and AdWords presence. With the additional 4th Ad replacing the 1st position Organic result, we would recommend that businesses continue to actively integrate their keywords within their website and blogs, where ever possible in order to enhance their chance of their landing pages appearing as high as they can beneath Search Ads. However, since ‘Shake-Up’, Google has announced that they have expanded the pixel width of the search engine pages; increasing meta-titles by 10 to 15 characters and meta-descriptions by 16 to 20 per line. This will ease the keyword integration process and improve overall meta-data quality for Google users and you. How To Approach The Changes In Performance Before considering increasing your campaign funds, we would recommend reviewing and optimising your AdWords Pay per Click campaigns. Amending the advert copy to be more relevant for chosen keywords and the selected landing page will help to improve Quality Score and in turn, performance levels. Unsure how best to optimise a Pay per Click campaign? Contact Generate UK. Our team of experts will be more than happy to analyse your account and provide recommendations on how to maximise your ad opportunities.

Generate UK Win Technology Innovator Award 2016

The project we entered into the Awards, that secured the win of this prestigious title was an innovative app we built for the local Sovereign Housing Association to assist them with the pilot  of the Voluntary Right To Buy Scheme being trialled through West Berkshire. Known as VRTB Assessments, this hand coded app was built to the specifications briefed by the local Housing Association to provide an interface that allowed applicants to register their interest for the ‘Right to Buy’ their council house so long as they meet specific criteria, such as being resident in their house for 10+ years. Innovate to save Out of the 5 Housing Associations chosen to pilot the scheme, Sovereign was the only one to chose to invest in innovative tech to qualify the process of registering interest. All the others chose the traditional route requiring teams of call centre staff and administrators to process the applications. Our app saved the Association around £120,000 in associated costs, which surpassed expectation in these times of austerity budget cuts for local councils. Big data analytics in action By monitoring usage statistics and industry trends, and then analysing and interpreting that data, we can continually improve VRTB Assessments app. This agility means changes can be made quickly to ensure the tool continues to meet the needs of the market, performs effectively, and delivers maximum return on investment. For example, increased mobile optimisation was required when it was realised 82% of users were accessing VRTB Assessments via a mobile device, Generate UK tweaked the functionality, look and feel to enhance performance. Google tracking code allowed us to monitor the user fall out and amended the process to minimise it, and with learnings taken from the financial sector, Generate UK added a qualification stage based on the tenant’s postcode which was promoted on social media, to encourage take up. Customer Service A particularly subjective measure, but one that can have far reaching impact, Customer Service is about making lives easier by imparting timely information. Due to the VRTB Assessment process, Sovereign has reported an increase in positive customer service. It enabled them to quickly identify alternative possibilities for those applicants registering their interest. Our Ethos Generate UK works in partnership with its clients to ensure they fully understand their clients business. In return, the agency provides innovative, creative and effective solutions that are closely aligned to clients’ objectives. Engaging in consulting, educating and sharing online knowledge throughout the working relationship, Generate UK delivers the right solution, on time and just how you want it.
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Fantasy Football builds relationships with hard to reach audiences

Maintaining a good level of communication with both customers and suppliers is often difficult. It takes a lot of time, resources and money to build relationships and strong brand loyalty. This is something Q Associates know all too well. Q Associates are an award winning IT Infrastructure and Data Management Company who design and deploy IT solutions and provide ongoing support and maintenance to their clients. In addition to their clients, Q Associates need to build awareness and loyalty towards their partners whose technology they use eg. IBM, Oracle and Microsoft. Q Associates had many years of successfully engaging in peer-to-peer relationship building using email, CRM and hospitality; however they felt, (apart from hospitality which is expensive), that it was a little forced. What they wanted was a way to engage regularly with their community without the hard sell. Generate UK worked with Q Associates to understand the requirements, including: The age and interests of their target audience (partners and clients) Budgets Key timing Device usage and time of day Learnings from successful hospitality eg entertainment, banter and engagement Generate UK came up with a highly creative and visual solution of an online “Q Associates Fantasy Football Game” to engage hundreds of Q Associates’ key contacts. Importantly, this included senior individuals at the manufacturers who they might not normally get airtime with.   Why Fantasy Football? Enables us to build community and communication with both Q Associates employees as well as vendors, without the hard sell. Engaged all audiences including individuals who may not have been accessible previously. Targets the right audience, specifically the decision makers who can be hard to reach. Delivered mass appeal and reach, cost efficiently. Provided a visual canvas on which to drive awareness of the Q Associates brand and USP’s. Engagement over the long term not just one event. It provided an absorbing application used regularly. So successful that it was rolled out to a second sport: Formula 1. Results speak for themselves Based on the success of the First Season of Fantasy Football we ran for Q Associates 2014/15, we recently completed Season 2 2015/16. Based on word of mouth and targeted promotion, year 2 was even more successful than year 1. There were 428 registered accounts and 122 teams across season 2.  These were predominantly made up of Customers and Suppliers, so Q Associates core audience, but also included some staff members. Amazingly, 1,341 player transfers took place showing the involvement and interest the Fantasy Football game generated. Over 30% of people logged in more than 30 times across the season which demonstrates the sustained engagement over the entire football season.  This is very hard to achieve with other traditional forms of marketing/communication without large budget outlays. Overall, Q Associates have benefited from a 23% increase in reach and engagement across 9 months of the year. This increased brand awareness and most importantly built relationships which were based on more than just sales.  Ultimately, this creates a more loyal customer and vendor base which is highly valuable to the business. We at Generate UK, can see that through these results Fantasy Football and other games are a proven Customer Relationship builder that can add valuable equity to your business through awareness, favourability and loyalty. We would love to share more of the same success with other clients, so please give us a call if you feel this may be of interest to your brand.