Minimalist Nutella Minimalism is in, with bloggers surviving on 100 items or less in their lives (heck, some 50), or experts giving advice on how to live better by downsizing clutter at home.  But how about in design? Its naked, its in your face, and sometimes seen as a bit risky.   Its very easy when creating (or commissioning) a marketing piece to want to but it all out there, to add as much as possible, to answer all the questions the audience may have.  However sometimes just going with the basics can have an even greater impact than crowded compositions.

A great way of doing this is to imagine you had only half the time to communicate your design needs  – so what are the “must haves” on your list.  The next step would be to let go of what your expectations of what the composition should look like.  For example labels may not need to have a visual representation of what’s inside if its a standard product, in the case of the featured product here – the packaging is transparent, why would you need any more info than actually seeing the product?

Finally expect more of your audience.  Believe and trust that they are intelligent, informed individuals and don’t need everything spelled out for them in bright letters with pictures.

Lately I’ve been noticing the most interesting things in the most unusual places.  Besides the standard local HPV ads at crotch level in public restrooms, there is some innovative work going on out there to get products and ideas into the hands of consumers by indirect markets.
Where you are can matter as much as what you are

Waiting for customers to come to you by realizing they have a need for your product and services and then seeking you out is just not enough.  In some cases a consumer may not even know how much they need you.  Yes, the best solution is investing more in marketing and promotion, however physically getting the information and product to them directly can yield even better results.

This can be a costly endeavor or an opportunity to do come creative networking and forming relationships with other businesses. This can be as simple as partnering with a complimentary service to your product and linking the two; or even having your product or service available in a completely different arena all together.

Widening the channels of distribution brings even more opportunities for growth.  Right now I’m working identifying more places that have hidden content opportunities beyond the usual corporate areas.  It has really opened my eyes as to how much we as a culture consume so much information; and all of that information has to come from somewhere right?

Take the show on the road

Image by Malias via Flickr

Where else can you take your product today?

It’s time to consider how you can take your show on the road, and make expand your distribution.

Google has recently announced that their little spat with Associated Press is now over.  The problems started at the begining of the year when the licensing agreement that allowed Google to display news content created by Associated Press expired.  There has long been contention between the two companies as to the future of ownership of content on the web.  Now, at least for the meanwhile a compromise has been reached.  So look forward again to more AP content appearing on google searches.

Google has stated on their blog today, “We’ve extended our existing licensing agreement with the Associated Press that permits us to host its content on Google properties such as Google News. We look forward to future collaborations, including on ways Google and AP can work together to create a better user experience and new revenue opportunities.”

Sometimes I’m bad at keeping up with all the constant new tools that Google keeps releasing.  Particularly Buzz…..not a huge fan of Buzz.  However Google’s new sub-menu search buttons are quite handy.

The Google Homepage

After performing a standard search, where you receive results of various places all over the web you can click on the left hand side menu of “More” and further drill down your results to something more useful to you.  In this case I was looking for new undiscovered blogs on one of my favorite topics – Vintage Clothing.  Yes, this does explain my penchant for 50’s wiggle dresses and my undying love for the show MadMen.

Google results for vintage clothing blogs

Google results for vintage clothing blogs

After doing a search for “vintage clothing” and clicked on “more” then “blogs” then specifically “homepages”.  Now I have a list of not just results, or people who have created a few entries about vintage clothing – but specifically those blogs that specialize in it.  This little trick is also going to come in handy when looking for new French baking blogs too I think.  You can never have enough new Macaron recipes you know.

Lovely Parisian Macarons that I can't get enough of

Lovely Parisian Macarons that I can't get enough of

Also nice surprise – the lovely folks at Cabaret Vintage are placing at the top of the blog list.  W00t.