TemplateMonster is Giving Away a Custom Deck of Web Design-themed Cards

templatemonster

An infographic on web design trends was posted on TemplateMonster a short while ago. If you haven’t seen it, you can check it here. It shows how web design trends have changed over recent years.

Back in 2004 websites looked a bit different from those we use today. They featured cluttered designs with chaotically ordered elements. Quite often, the sites were overloaded with various visual effects. As a result, it was somewhat difficult to focus on the content and find the information in which you were interested.

During the same period of time, pale color schemes started growing in popularity. Actually, this approach turned out to be quite effective, and it’s no big surprise that it is widely used today.

Flash technology was also incredibly popular during those years. In the 2000s it was as important for web designers as CSS, Java and jQuery are today. Flash was the most effective solution to make a site look more alive and dynamic.

Since that time, IT has come a long way and evolved into a practical science. One of the trendiest directions of 2015 is material design. Originally, it was introduced by Google. Along with monochromatic colors and micro-interactions, the material design sites ensure a striking look and unmatched performance for any business project.

As mentioned above, TemplateMonster decided to return to the subject of web design trends and introduce the same idea in another format. If you are interested in this niche and want to know more about the evolution of web design, new ideas and trends, you are going to like what TemplareMonster has created.

templatemonster

Let’s take a closer look at what they have done. The company has released a deck of custom playing cards that illustrate the major web design trends of the last 12 years. Each card describes one particular trend.

How does one obtain one of these decks?  

It’s simple. You can win a custom designed deck of cards by taking a simple quiz based on these trends. It starts on May 26 and will be available for one week only, so you’d better hurry up. Once you complete the test, share this news in social networks. Remember, the more actively you share, the more chances you have of winning a prize. So go ahead and get yourself a cool, custom-made deck for absolutely no charge.

And one more thing – those users who answer all questions correctly will get a custom-made badge – Web Design Guru, as a bonus.

Freedom of Speech Isn’t So Free

Deserted_Speakers'_Corner_-_Singapore_(gabbe)

While the First Amendment certainly protects your right to free speech, you know that it’s really not that simple. Just because you have the right to say what you want, doesn’t mean you can always say what you want, where you want.

The catch is that regardless of where you say something, there are always consequences. If you say something to your spouse that’s laced with sarcasm, you may end up sleeping on the couch. If a child says something inappropriate to their teacher, they may find themselves in the principal’s office. If an athlete talks back to his coach, he’ll likely end up running or sitting on the bench.

In fact, one of the best examples of not being able to say what you want, where you want involved a recent case of not talking at all. Last NFL football season, Seattle Seahawks star running back Marshawn Lynch was fined multiple times for his refusal to speak with the media.

What do all of these examples have in common, and why are they relevant to you as a blogger? They all point to one important fact: Free speech may be allowed, but you must be wary of the consequences. Each of these instances is legal, but they come with significant results. [Read more…]

The Art of Outreach: How to Build Relationships with Fellow Bloggers

Breaking chain

Success ladder

Blogging is a social activity. You’re not sharing your ideas or thoughts to a wall. The sheer act of publishing your post online opens you to opportunities of interacting with your readers and like-minded people. You can then build your relationships with them into something fruitful on a business scale.

That said, outreach skills are lost among bloggers. They are more concerned with launching SEO campaigns, which is not bad in principle. But devoting most of their time to this strategy prevents them from making a connection with their audience and influencers within their industry. Cultivating relationships can lead to more rewarding opportunities in the future.

If you’re not sure where to start with blogger outreach, below is a step-by-step process on how you can do it.

[Read more…]

5 Ways to Make Customers Part of Your Marketing Strategy

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marketing1

Steve Jobs famously said, “You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them.” When it comes to envisioning new products, he might have been right — customers don’t always know what they want until you show it to them. However, marketing is different. It’s about building relationships. If you expect a relationship to succeed, you have to listen to what the other person wants.

As a marketer, you can model potential customer buying paths, but guess what? Your customers may or may not comply with them. Perhaps it’s time to stop modeling and start asking them what they want. They just might end up doing your marketing for you. [Read more…]

6 Lifesavers for Bloggers

Man typing on laptop

Man typing on laptop

Being a freelancer blogger is no easy task; after all, it’s pretty stressful not knowing when a project will end, figuring out where your next client is coming from, or making sure that you’re completing blogs in the right amount of time to lead to a lucrative hourly rate. Luckily, there’s a plethora of other professionals at the ready who can make your blogging career a little easier. Get them on your side, and on your payroll, to maximize your earnings.

There are new freelance opportunities popping up everywhere, and The Guardian is reporting on some of them, but did you know that freelance bloggers are the perfect match for other freelancers? “Freelancing” is an industry in itself, and blogging is just a small part of it. You can’t be expected to also be an expert accountant, attorney or HR specialist, so make sure you have these lifesavers at your fingertips:

1. AP/AR

Tracking your accounts payable and accounts receivable is crucial to keeping your bottom line intact. For the tech savvy blogger, there are many software options, but you might prefer relying on a bookkeeping specialist. Check out Business News Daily for tips on the best software for your needs, or find a local freelancer with a solid portfolio to take care of line items for you. However, AP/AR isn’t complete with itemizing your deductions. [Read more…]

What the New EU VAT MOSS Legislation Means for Bloggers and How to Manage It Effectively

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Editor’s note: This post was written by Jawad Khan, a content marketing consultant and a freelance blogger for hire. Follow him on his blog Writing My Destiny, Twitter and Google+.

EU VAT MOSS

You’ve always wanted to live the internet lifestyle and build a steady stream of online income. Every successful blogger you’ve read recommends creating your own products and focusing on building an online business instead of just being a freelancer.

But unfortunately, the law makers in the European Union have just made digital product selling much more difficult. If you are selling digital products from your website and have customers from the EU then you need to be aware of the tax rule changes in the EU and how they will impact you. [Read more…]

10 Tech, Digital, and Social Media Conferences to Attend in 2014

social media conferences

We’re halfway through the year, and a lot of things have happened in the tech, digital, marketing, and social media scenes. The landscape is in a constant state of flux, with brilliant minds from all over the world contributing to its evolution.

social media conferences

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One thing that every professional in these niches has to prioritize is professional improvement, and that may include learning on one’s own by reading, networking online or via conferences, among other things. That is why we decided to put together a list of tech, digital, and social media conferences you can still look forward to this year.

While some are pretty near (in terms of date), others are still some months away, so you can plan your trip – choose cheap flights via comparison sites, find an affordable hotel via sites such as Uyora, and of course, plan other touristy stuff you can do when not participating in a session. [Read more…]

Win One of Three Premium Themes from ThemeFuse!

premium wordpress themes

premium wordpress themes

There are so many WordPress themes to choose from, but premium themes are not always the go-to choice of users simply because they have to pay for it.

There’s no doubt that WordPress is an awesome platform – not the least because of the wide variety of themes you can choose. If you use WordPress for your website or blog, you’ll love the style and quality offered by these themes.

This week, we’re giving you the chance to get a premium theme from ThemeFuse, totally for FREE! [Read more…]

How to Use the Art of Email Marketing to Launch Your Blog & Start Converting

getresponse

Email marketing is still a powerful marketing and blog promotion tool despite the changes in the ways we communicate online. Although we’re seeing where social media is rapidly evolving the medium and effectiveness of conversations, email still has a place in reaching responsive audiences and building relationships. The trick to email marketing, and practically every other form of marketing online, is that we have to start respecting the medium, the process and the people we see as our users, readers and potential clients.

email marketing for bloggers

To market your blog successfully you’ll have to get out of the mindset of treating subscribers and readers of your blogs as mere users or statistics and start thinking of every single reader as a valued client with whom you value and are building a relationship. Email marketing is relationship building, not mass marketing like television ads. This attitude flows into all aspects of your blogging business and will reap greater rewards as you invest more in building relationships. It’s just that simple. Yet however simple the concept may be, it still requires patience and a long-term vision since no serious relationship is built overnight. [Read more…]