The thing about logos

Logo fever

So your thinking about making a logo? Maybe it’s your first one or a redesign. I know it’s exciting and quite frankly, fun to tackle whether with a consultant, a design firm or using Fiverr. Things you may want consider before you go the new logo route.

  1. Logo detail. A few years back, I did a logo for a small construction firm. The wanted a ruler with lines it. Like the actual tick marks on it. You got to present your topic in a general way. Like the new KFC logo. It has the general look of Colonel Sanders. Back to the ruler logo, once you reduce it onto a business card, you loose the ruler detail and looks like a small mess.
  2. Keep to 1 to 3 colors. Less is better. When choosing colors, it’s a fun process, but make sure they complement each other. Also, the colors are so far out there like bright neon with a neutral color. Also old school printers and screen printers can charge more by each additional color.
  3. With the final product, make sure you get a copy of the original logo files. I run into this a lot and it’s not uncommon. These business owners and organization leaders sometimes don’t even know who created the logos. One of my non-profits I worked for didn’t even know who created their logo. The truth revealed itself when another client of mine was upset their college-aged child never received recognition or compensation for their work. However, they still have the logo original files and the copyright.
  4. Copyright. Make sure you get the copyright. The original creator can always comeback and rightfully get upset about lack of recognition and compensation. Imagine driving in a city and seeing your work on the city’s new water tower? This gets a little sticky, so get full rights to use your logo.
  5. Consider the big cost picture. If you do a new logo, you may have to print new business cards, car decals, and signs. You may have to update websites, social media and advertising. So the new shiny designs’ costs goes beyond just paying the designer. Be mindful before you get a new logo.

When creating your new logo, keep it simple and keep the original files. Most of all, have fun creating it.

Hacked website? Don’t panic. How to prevent it as a small business owner.

One of many screens in the internet world indicating a hacked website.

As a small business owner, you have a lot on your plate. Inventory, sales, payroll, accounting, expenses, and taking care of your customers. The least thing you want to deal with is a hacked website. Yes, I have had dealt with my share of compromised sites and yes, it’s a pain. As a web person, you have to look through the code, files and countless hours spent on the phone with your web host. It’s hours that could have been applied to the bottom line: running your business.

Do hackers care? No. Most of the time, they just release some malware hoping it will take down a few sites or even a big network. For yourself, it’s an unwelcomed headache and nobody wins. But it’s unfortunately has been a part of the internet world for the past few years.

A solution? Get a simple turnkey website though major webhosts like Godaddy, WIX or WordPress. With the websites getting so complicated these days, you need something fairly simple that will show up on a computer, tablet and phone with ease. Let’s take WordPress for example. It’s starter plan is free and the price goes up from there. Now you can spend thousands on a site developed by a web firm, but with technology so advanced, do you really want to put in 2 to 6 months to wait for it to go live? There’s also the security issue. If the website does go down, the web professional do have back ups and it will go live again immediately. So it’s really a no brainer. These big corporate firms have people working 24/7 to keep the sites up. When working with a smaller firm or consultant, you would have to track them down and basically, they have a part of your business riding on the palm of their hands. They are competent people, but it’s the lag time that’s the hardest to handle.

Many small businesses and organizations are going to this model. It’s still perfectly fine to work with a professional to set the site up, but make sure you have all the usernames, passwords to get on the site. Also make sure you have the website and domain directed to one of your businesses’ emails.

Also, with the simple website, you only need to get your business information out there. You do not need a lot if any fancy plugins and 3rd party add-ons. That slows a site down and you risk more opportunities for hacking. At the end of the day, it’s one less worry on your business plate and more time to help your customers.

Frugal Internet Marketing During the Pandemic

With all the shut downs, recommendations of places to avoid, and WFH office style, how does one market themselves? Two main cheap ways: word of mouth and internet marketing. Word of mouth will always be best because others are marketing for you based on past work for them or you just plain know them. Because everyone has a friend who can do something, right?

Social media options: pick your appropriate platforms.

Social distancing, quarantine, shut down, it’s all the new normal for know. We must adapt to stay afloat. In all reality, technology is really saving our butts in regards to education, socializing, health care, entertainment and doing business. I remember back in January 2020, moms at this get together would scream a their kids to get off their electronic devices, now it’s part of their daily routine, plus more. We must adapt technology with our business marketing instead.

For now, networking meetings are out. Handshakes: out. Big company luncheons: out. So must turn to the internet for business survival help. Yes, social media mainly. However, social media, as you know, is not a one size fits all. So true. But it’s free. It does take time and time is money. Pick your social medias wisely and be consistent. It’s easy to go down the rabbit hole and spend hours upon hours with social media.

One thing is certain: the business still needs to be running and money must be flowing in. Explore your social media and internet options and see which is a good fit for your business. Have a presence, but really concentrate on 1 to 2 social medias whether it be Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. There are many more out there, but use your time wisely and try to get on these platforms at least once a week. More is better. But internet market within the time parameters of your business.

The World’s Greatest Website: Berkshire Hathaway Inc.

You may be asking yourself, “Why would Berkshire Hathaway be the world’s greatest website?” I can answer that question in two words: Warren Buffet. For those of you old web development timers would know, the site is mainly built on old-school H-T-M-L. The navigation is simple, yet no link bar anywhere yet alone any new bootstrap technology anywhere. But who can argue with the Oracle of Omaha. The man is worth approximately $80 billion dollars. So, as a business owner or a worker in a corporation, one would take note of the simplicity and straightforwardness of the site. Clicking on any link on the page would force, once landed on the new page, the user to hit the…back button on a web browser. Certainly one of the basic UX and web development cardinal sins. Never let the user hit the back button.

Berkshire Hathaway’s website 1999-2020

But, if one such person would want the success of a Warren Buffett, wouldn’t a person imitate his behaviors like wearing the same 20 or so suits, eating meals at McDonald’s, reading for hours, and living in the same house he bought in the 1950s. Right? So you would think some would jump on the same bandwagon, develop a minimalistic and extremely bare bones website. After all, this site was made in 1999. That’s about the time when Microsoft’s Frontpage was considered a staple in web development. What’s to stress here that Buffett and his company’s work speaks for itself. Which has me guessing that this flip phone owning financial guru does not need a fancy website. Just a simple website of links, pdfs, and where to be found.

As web and internet people, both ourselves and customers want the latest and greatest by all means possible for the coolest websites. But what does the user really want? Of course: information. The sooner they can get it, the sooner they can got back to what they are doing, whatever they may be.

So, the next time your business or organization is looking for a website rebuild, ask why. Sure you might need an additional feature, but remember, keep it simple. Your work will speak for itself and I have never heard a customer said, “I was sold to work with you because of your fancy, fancy website.” Plus, bottom line, it will save you thousands of dollars.

Time to have some fun.

We are going to blog. We are going to blog.

We have been around for about 2 decades. Can you believe it? It’s crazy. Time goes pretty fast. Lots changed in the web world. Back in 1999, we were developing in Microsoft Frontpage. Today? We went from Joomla, Drupal to WordPress. Some folks just use Facebook or Instagram for their web presence. Amazing! Just make sure you’re online. We have clients who don’t have a website and use all social media. And guess what? It works. Make sure communicate, communicate, communicate. Get your presence out there. What works for a corporation would not entirely work for a one-person business. So if a firm preaches what you need. Just stop. Wait a minute and see what others are doing in your industry with a similar size. Then copy them. If the formula works, do it.

 

Welcome to our Underground Lair

Mattison Web is a professional Website Design and Internet Marketing firm located near Des Moines, Iowa. We provide fully customized Internet solutions to make your brand succeed while maintaining an eye-catching design and the necessary functionality.

Whether your website requires e-commerce functionality, content management, dazzling Flash animation, high-volume information management, and more. Our specialized team of designers, programmers, and marketing specialists, each an expert in his or her own field, will handle your project from start to finish. From design to development, from coding to marketing, whether you are going live or going to print, their work is custom fit to your marketing requirements.

Professional Internet solutions to complex problems

Work with a team of professional website designers who understand your company and your company goals. Mattison Web works well for both small and large business sizes because we are better able to understand those needs. We believe in providing our clients with the tools and pre-planned web strategies that are crucial for success. We help grow business or simply make sure they achieve their online website design goals.

Due to the close relationship with our clients, along with our custom graphic and web site design services, we are among the trusted companies in Iowa when it comes to professional website design. We provide answers to developmental questions that clients may not think to ask and provide constant updates so that they have a full understanding of what phase their design project is in.

A web design firm with a personal touch

Mattison Web is a website development & online marketingfirm located in Pleasant Hill, Iowa. We create solutions that bring clients measurable results to help grow their business and enhance their brand.Our designs are unique and functional. We create websites that look great and are useful to a client’s business needs.

CUSTOMIZED: We think outside of the box to bring you results. We make sure you succeed with solutions tailored to best suit your needs and make you stand-out from the competition.

PRO-ACTIVE: Our team members provide you with solutions before problems arise. We give you personal attention, immediate feed-back and suggestions to enhance usability, features and marketing results.

RESULTS-DRIVEN: Our team members create designs and develop solutions that are not only eye-catching and useful: they bring your business the results you need and a positive ROI.Mattison Web was created in April 2001 to provide our clients with professional, customized solutions to suit their specific business requirements at affordable rates. Mattisonweb is a web-based company that provides the correct strategies and solutiions for our client companies all across the United States. We strive and continue to build long-lasting relations with clients, year after year.

SEO’s are sooo ’90’s!!

Remember when Search Engine Optimization was the rage?   For some businesses, it’s still a very important factor in SE rankings.  But seriously, who afford it or have time to learn it?  At Mattison Web, we offer it, but there’s a better and cheaper way: blogs.  Blogs are wonderful.  You can write anytime, anyday.  More activity to your blog, the more recognition for your business or organization.

Don’t limit yourself to blogs.  Facebook, mySpace, YouTube are just a couple of social media tools powerful enough to get you more recognition than the 15 minutes of fame on any reality show.  Ever heard of Obama Girl?  I am sure you have.  Just remember, YOU won Time Magazine’s person of the year in ’06!

Don’t ignore your audience. Inform them.

Recently, a client and I were at a huge Des Moines social function and ran into someone I knew.  Quite a nice person, said Hello, and immediately went to start chatting with new other folks without any other chit-chat with no further introductions.  There’s nothing wrong with that.  However, that’s leaving little information about that person and closing off anymore lines of communication.  That left the person I was with confused, ignored and lost interest with this old aquantence. 

If we ignore our websites, neglect our blogs, the will be no more audience to be curious to learn more about you, your business, and company.  There could have been further business and great networking opportunities in the future.  So, update your websites, blogs, adversting materials and other media.  That’s the same as ignoring your audience.