Final day to enter

IAClogo6If you have not yet submitted your entry for the 2017 Internet Advertising Competition, today is your last opportunity to correct that situation.

The extended deadline for entry is today, February 17th at midnight EST. You can enter at www.IACAward.org

Today is also the final day to edit your entries if you have already entered. The judging starts on Monday.

Now it its 15th year, the IAC Awards recognizes the best in all forms on online advertising.

IAC Awards Deadline Extended

IAC Award Crystal StatueHere is what you need to know:

  • The deadline for entering the 2017 Internet Advertising Competition has been extended until February 17th. This will be the only extension.
  • This international award program will evaluate all forms of online advertising in 86 industry categories, including consumer goods, education, financial services, health care, legal, professional services, retail, small business, technology and travel. You compete only against those entries within your industry.
  • Winners receive a beautiful custom-made crystal statue. This award uses high quality clear and black crystal, with a custom geometric hand cut shape, and the pieces of black and clear crystal seamlessly fused and polished together by hand.
  • Winning an award is a great way to demonstrate to the world the effectiveness of your online advertising capabilities. It can benefit new business pitches, staff morale, budget justification and personal career advancement. This award will get you noticed.
  • You can’t win if you don’t enter.
  • Enter this week at www.IACAward.org

Win a Free Conference Pass to eTail West!

etail-west-img-2017This month we are offering retail professionals the chance to win a free full conference pass to the industry conference eTail West 2017, February 27 – March 2, 2017 at the JW Marriott in Palm Springs, CA.

eTail, launched in 1999, is the premiere multi-channel retail conference dedicated to supporting the growth of the retail industry through high-level networking and extensive thought leadership. eTail West was launched as part of the eTail Conference series to speak to the unique challenges facing retailers looking to grow their brand in the market.

To enter simply go to the WMA Contest page and enter. Learn more about this leading industry conference here.

 

eTail West 2017

etail-west-img-2017eTail West 2017
February 27 – March 2, 2017
JW Marriott, Palm Springs, CA
 
Wonder how Avon continues to be the leading social selling beauty company in North America? Come to eTailWest 2017 to find out! Download the agenda to learn all the details.
eTail, launched in 1999, is the premiere multi-channel retail conference dedicated to supporting the growth of the retail industry through high-level networking and extensive thought leadership. eTail West was launched as part of the eTail Conference series to speak to the unique challenges facing retailers looking to grow their brand in the market. Download the agenda to learn more: http://etailwest.wbresearch.com/agenda-mc

 

Web Marketing Association Names Best Mobile Web Sites Apps of 2016

best-mobile-award-smThe Web Marketing Association is pleased to announce the winners its fifth annual international MobileWebAward competition.  This award program recognizes the individual and team achievements of Web professionals all over the world who create and maintain the best mobile Websites and the best mobile applications.  The complete list of winners can be found at www.mobile-webaward.org.

“Smartphones and tablet computers are exploding and companies are racing to be allow users to connect and interact with them using mobile devices,” said William Rice, president of the Web Marketing Association.  “The goal of the MobileWebAwards is to both recognize the people and organizations responsible for developing some of the most effective mobile Web sites and mobile apps on the Internet.”

This year’s top awards include:

TMP Worldwide won Best of Show Mobile Website for Unexpected Accenture – You View, which also was recognized as Best Employment Mobile Website. Unexpected Accenture – You View’s goal is to get people excited about a career in technology by bringing case studies to life through the people who worked on them.

Ormco Corporation won Best of Show Mobile Application for Bethany Hamilton Damon™ Smile Emoji Keyboard, which also was awarded Best Mobile Mobile Application. The Bethany Hamilton Damon Smile Emoji keyboard is the first app that supports teens and adults undergoing orthodontic treatment by leveraging the power of mobile messaging apps to enhance the power of self-confidence.

TMP Worldwide was named Top Interactive Agency for the 2016 MobileWebAwards competition. They received 11 awards, including: Best of Show Mobile Website, Best Employment Mobile Website, Best Marketing Mobile Website, Best Technology Mobile Website and 9 Outstanding Mobile Website Awards.

Two organization were recognized with the Outstanding Mobile Interactive Developer for winning five or more MobileWebAwards. They are TravelClick Inc, and TopSpot Internet Marketing.

A complete list of winners can be found on the award program’s Website.

The MobileWebAwards were judged on seven criteria seen as requirements for a success mobile website or mobile app. They include Creativity, Impact, Design, Content, Interactivity, Ease of use and Use of the medium. Each mobile website or mobile app entry is judged against other entries of the same format in its industry category and then against an overall standard of excellence.

The Best of Industry winners receive a statue reminiscent of a personal mobile device, it could be yesterday’s smart phone, today’s tablet, or tomorrow’s device.  It is crafted of fine jet black crystal with the iconic “W” accent in 24kt plated gold and personalized with your award information.  The award is entirely hand crafted by, Society Awards, the makers and designers of other notable award programs such as the Golden Globes, Emmys, MTV VMAs, and CLIOs to name a few, and presented in its own custom gift box.

The 2016 MobileWebAwards are sponsored by the following leading organizations: Small Army Creative Services, PR.com, EContent Magazine, ad:tech conferences, SEO Inc, Cranberry Radio, and Website Magazine. The Web Marketing Association thanks these companies for their commitment to the entire online marketing community.

IAC Awards Looking for Additional Judges

Best Advertising AwardsThe Web Marketing Association’s 15th annual Internet Advertising Competition (IAC) Award program is currently accepting entries and is looking for qualified judges to help adjudicate this year’s award program. The IAC Awards are the first and only industry-based advertising award competition dedicated exclusively to online advertising.

To nominate yourself or someone within your organization, please complete the Judge’s Nomination Form. Internet and advertising professionals selected as judges will be contacted during the first week of January.

“We are looking to expand the judging pool for the awards by bring on qualified advertising professionals to help us set the standard of excellence for online advertising,” said William Rice, president of the Web Marketing Association, Inc.  “We created the IAC Awards to highlight the best in this unique advertising medium by industry and need additional  individuals who have direct experience developing online advertising. Our judges must have an in-depth understanding of the current state-of-the-art in web advertising, an eye for a well-designed ad and the objectivity to score entries according to a predefined set of criteria”.

Judging for the IAC Awards will take place in February, 2017, and winners will be notified by e-mail one week prior to the general announcement of winners in March, 2017. Judges will consist of a select group of Internet advertising professionals with an in-depth understanding of the current state-of-the-art in Web advertising. Past competition judges have included top executives from leading corporations, institutions and media organizations such as Arc Worldwide, Brunner Digital, Campbell-Ewald, CNN News Group, Deep Interactive Asia, Digitas, EuroRSCG 4D, Google, IBM Interactive, imc2, JWT, LeapFrog Interactive, Mass Transmit, McCann Worldgroup, Razorfish, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Tectis GmbH, TMP Worldwide, Universal McCann Interactive and Wunderman / Y&R.

The Internet Advertising Competition Awards are open to all organizations and individuals (advertising and interactive agencies, corporate marketing departments, etc.) involved in the process of developing Internet advertising. Entries may be submitted online at http://www.iacaward.org. The deadline for entry is January 31, 2017 and will be judged on creativity, innovation, impact, design, copywriting, and use of the medium.

“It is an honor and an important responsibility when you are chosen to participate as a judge, said Rice. “Judging an award show like the IAC Awards is a great way to share your experience and expertise with the online advertising community. You are helping to set the standard for award winning advertising throughout the Web”.

The 2017 Internet Advertising Competition Awards are sponsored by SEO Inc., Small Army Creative Services, PR.com, EContent Magazine, ad:tech conferences, Cranberry Radio and Website Magazine.

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The Best Online Advertising To Be Named By Web Marketing Association

IAC Award Crystal StatueThe Web Marketing Association announces the Call for Entries for the 15th annual Internet Advertising Competition (IAC) Awards. The IAC Awards are the first and only industry-based advertising award competition dedicated exclusively to online advertising. This international award program will evaluate all forms of online advertising, including email, page-based ads, online newsletters, mobile apps, Websites, video and social media in 96 industry categories. The Competition Web site is located at www.iacaward.org and the deadline for entry is January 31, 2017.

“Online advertising continues to explode in all of it forms,” said William Rice, President of the Web Marketing Association. “We created the IAC Awards to highlight the best in this unique advertising medium by industry, and also to help advertising professionals validate their efforts to clients and senior management. The IAC Awards can provide third party confirmation that clients are getting the best creative for their ad dollars. Winning awards is a great way to demonstrate your creative potential.”

The Internet Advertising Competition Awards are open to all organizations and individuals (advertising and interactive agencies, corporate marketing departments, small business owners, etc.) involved in the process of developing Internet advertising. Entries may be submitted online at http://www.iacaward.org. The deadline for entry is January 31, 2017 and will be judged on creativity, innovation, impact, design, copywriting, and use of the medium.

Awards will be presented within each of the industry categories and advertising formats including:
Best Social Media Campaign
Best Online ad (including banner, pop-up or interstitial)
Best Rich media online ad
Best Email message
Best Online newsletter
Best Website (including best landing pages and best microsites)
Best Online video
Best Mobile applications
Best Integrated ad campaign

Best of show award for each format will be selected from among the industry winners. Ads eligible for entry in the competition must have run during the period from January 1, 2016 through January 31, 2017.

Interactive agencies that win multiple awards will also be in the running for Top Agency Award. Each entrant will be awarded points based on the level of award for each award received. A Best of Show will be worth 5 points, Best of Industry 3 points and each Outstanding award 1 point. The agency with the most points will be awarded the Top Agency Award. Agencies winning an IAC Award will also be automatically included in the Award Winning Agencies Database

In an effort to recognize those organizations that demonstrate exceptional development skills across multiple entries, agencies that win more the 6 awards will also be recognized with an Outstanding Advertising Developer award from the Web Marketing Association. In 2016, seven agencies won this honor.

Judging for the IAC Awards will take place in February, 2017, and winners will be notified by e-mail in March, 2017. Judges will consist of a select group of Internet advertising professionals with an in-depth understanding of the current state-of-the-art in Web advertising. Past competition judges have included top executives from leading corporations, institutions and media organizations such as Arc Worldwide, Brunner Digital, Campbell-Ewald, CNN, Deep Interactive Asia, Digitas, EuroRSCG 4D, Google, IBM Interactive, imc2, JWT, LeapFrog Interactive, Mass Transmit, McCann Worldgroup, Razorfish, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Tectis GmbH, TMP Worldwide, Universal McCann Interactive and Wunderman / Y&R.

The 2017 Internet Advertising Competition Awards are sponsored by SEO Inc., Small Army, PR.Com, EContent Magazine, ad:tech conferences, Cranberry Radio and Website Magazine.

A complete list of past IAC Award winners can be found at the IAC Award Website.

 

Best Internet Advertising Awards

Web Marketing Association Names SEO Inc. Official Search Engine Marketing Partner

seo_incThe Web Marketing Association is pleased to announce that it has selected SEO, Inc. as the official Search Engine Marketing partner for its industry leading award programs. The Web Marketing Association is organizer of the WebAward Competition for Website Development, Internet Advertising Competition and the MobileWebAwards.

“Search engine optimization and content marketing is key to any marketer looking to have their marketing materials found on the Internet”, said William Rice, President of the Web Marketing Association. “SEO, Inc. will help us insure the winners of our award programs receive the maximum exposure possible because of their achievement. Winning an award is an outstanding way to show off your expertise in web development, but it also can be a boon for your web marketing. SEO Inc. is going to help us improve us optimize our award websites so that award winners receive critical inbound links from a credible source.”

SEO Inc is an award winning innovative Internet Marketing company located in San Diego CA. SEO Inc has more than 20 years of SEO / PPC specific experience in the digital marketing field, that’s more that 99% of current SEO companies. We believe in developing digital marketing campaigns that are built on a foundation of SEO Inc’s proven methodology. Their seo services fills in every piece of the ever changing and complex SEO puzzle, get SEO Optimization that gains marketing traction quickly and establishes your brand in your industry. Our SEO company can get you campaign off the ground, with a long-term proven custom SEO strategy.

“We are thrilled to support the WMA, and it’s outstanding award programs for their contributions in recognizing the best the web has to offer,” says Garry Grant, CEO of SEO Inc. “It is our pleasure to work with them to ensure that hard-working webmasters get the recognition they deserve.”

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Attend Industry Conferences for Free!

This month, the Web Marketing Association is holding a drawing to win a free full conference pass to two outstanding industry conferences.

adtechnyad:tech New York – November 2-3, Javits Center NYC — From Fortune 100 to emerging start-ups, innovators across industries converge to discuss the new era of advertising and marketing technology. This 20th Anniversary of ad:tech looks to be the most comprehensive yet with exciting hands-on exhibitions, invaluable learning opportunities, and the players reimaging the future of the industry.

nfiNetFinance Interactive – Nov 29-Dec 1, Carlsbad CA — The event for FS executives, NetFinance Interactive is the one-stop shop for digital and multi-channel thought leaders. It’s an event where you’ll learn, gain inspiration and find solutions for your business – all while building lasting relationships.

To enter either drawing or both, visit the WMA Contest Page before the end of day on October 25, 2016.

Redesigning an agency website – trying to outsmart your older self

If I’ve learned anything in the past decade of running a software consulting company, it’s that redesigning your own website is an extremely difficult endeavour, just for the sheer fact that you are your own client with extremely high expectations. This made me cautious to any undertaking that involved a redesign of our website.

It’s been 2,5 years since we last redesigned our website. The website we created in the winter of 2013 could still hold it’s own (even in todays terms of quality), and we were still getting a lot of compliments for it. Also, to be very honest, we could have managed completely fine as a business with the old one.

New vs. old Infinum website New vs. old Infinum website.

But, our team wasn’t happy with the current state of affairs and wanted to change things. The designers wanted to create a completely new look and feel. The developers weren’t happy with the code, mostly because we’ve increased our development standards so much since then.

Everyone just felt that we’ve improved so much over the past 2,5 years and that our website should show it. We recently celebrated the company’s 10 year anniversary and felt this was a good occasion to do a redesign. So we threw caution to the wind and went for it.

Who are we doing this for?

Whenever you approach a major task like a redesign, you need to have a clear idea of why are you doing it, and what are the business goals you want to achieve.

We set out with a simple, but important, process:

  • Analyzing existing website traffic – we went into Google Analytics and researched in-depth where our visitors are coming from and what pages are they visiting
  • Defining personas – who are our main visitors, why do they come to our website and what do they care about?

After that, we defined two primary personas that we’d be building the site for. All subsequent decisions would be made with these two personas in mind.

Two different personas Defining personas helped us focus our efforts during the entire redesign process.

  • The Client – someone who wants to build a digital product. He/she may be a manager at an established company, running their own startup or working at an agency. The Client is looking for a quality design/development shop that can build the product or work in cooperation with his/her team. The Client has a rough vision of the product and a dedicated budget.
  • The New Hire – someone who wants to work on building digital products. He’s interested in the type of work we do (iOS/ Android/ Rails/ JavaScript/ UX/ UI Design). He may have experience, he may be in college or he may work with different technologies and is looking for a career change. He’s laid back and wants to work with like-minded people.

Presenting the work

Probably the most important part of our website is presenting the work we do in the form of case studies. It’s one thing to say we do good work, it’s another to actually put it up on display.

From a branding perspective, we wanted each case study to be branded according to the clients (or projects) individual brand. If we were to present this work “inside” the Infinum website, the brand would be mixed up with the Infinum brand so we wanted to avoid that.

Also, we wanted to make it easy for the visitor to jump in and out of different case studies. We thought the idea of having a case study pop out, and then pop back in after you’re done viewing the case would do the trick.

The JavaScript team had their job cut out for them – to make the Zoomer work as the crazy designers imagine it.

For this, we built a custom case display system we call “Zoomer”. We prototyped the interactions and animations for Zoomer in Keynote and Adobe Flash (yes, Flash is still good for something) and we immediately fell in love with the concept. You can see it on our Homepage or in the Client work sections.

Our stuff

We do a lot of stuff internally that’s not billable client work. It’s either productized software (like Productive), education initiatives (like iOS/Android talks or Infinum Academy) or open source contributions.

We do this for a variety of different reasons:

  • it improves our internal processes
  • it improves our skill that we leverage later for Client Work
  • we use a lot of open source, so it makes sense to give back to the community
  • it’s fun to do so it’s kind of a creative outlet for us

Our old website didn’t talk about this part of Infinum enough, so we needed to change that. We created Our stuff where we will showcase this aspect of the company.

Careers

As we mentioned earlier, one of the most important Personas visiting our website is the New Hire. Our old website had the Careers section listed as a 2nd tier item, somewhere under the “About” section. We wanted to raise the importance of this.

More importantly here was to convey the work atmosphere, and the way we take care of everybody (gym, health checks, ..). So, an imperative here was to use only real photos, no stock photography. No bullshit, just the real stuff.

Selfies

And when it comes to real photos, it doesn’t get more real than this. For the People section, we wanted people to be able to express their own personality, so instead of doing professional photos of the crew, we told everyone to take a selfie of themselves.

What we learned from this is that we need to work on educating people what a selfie actually is.

Selfies

Can you spot the selfie imposter?

There’s no About page

Currently, our website doesn’t have an About page, and this is on purpose.

We figured it’s kind of stupid to have a special About page, since the whole website is basically about us. The best way to find out “About” Infinum is to:

I just hate lengthy mission statements and wanted to avoid talking about how great we are and let our work speak for ourselves.

Hiring us is now even easier

We improved our Request For Quote (RFQ) form to make it even easier to Hire us for any projects you might have. We scaled down the number of questions, while staying true to the facts we need to know before engaging in a project:

  • About you and your business
  • About your project
  • Your deadlines
  • Your budget
  • Your target audience

The typography

A lot of thought went into selecting the right typography. This was also a mini rebranding event for us since we’re changing our base typography set.

We wanted to choose a clean typeset, but also one that has character and that would leave an impact. The idea was to avoid trendy and overused fonts like Futura, Circular and Proxima. Those are some great fonts but we wanted to try something different.

Typography considerations

A couple of typography versions we considered before reaching our goal.

After bouncing around a couple of ideas and testing a number of different fonts, we fell in love with the monolinear geometric grotesque typeface GT Haptik. It has a regular and rotalic style, and includes alternate versions of certain characters (like G, C etc…) that also have a strong influence on optical legibility.

Alternate character versions

Alternate versions of certain characters we use.

A continuing story

We wanted a feeling of continuation on each page, so after you get to the bottom of a page, you can continue the story by following the prominent links in the page footer. We wanted to emphasize this with extra-snazzy page transitions, and this is the part where the designers really pushed our JavaScript developers to the limits.

Extra snazzy page footer animations.

The backend

For the backend, we use a custom CMS. Apart from serving blog posts, it also handles RFQs, Client surveys, Event signups and a couple of other doo-dads. All the copy editing is done via Phrasing, making it simple to tweak any wording when we feel like it.

We use Amazon Cloudfront to serve our images quickly to visitors and also Google PageSpeed Module for further optimization.

Phrasing in use on the Infinum website

Phrasing is an open-source library for live editing copy on websites.

The frontend

The old website was built on Bootstrap because…well, everything was built in Bootstrap back then. In the meantime, Bootstrap proved not so great at doing everything, so we ditched it and went with a custom set of frontend technologies that would be more flexible and easier to maintain in the future.

We didn’t want one big CSS/JavaScript framework that solves everything, but rather a loosely coupled set of different libraries, each great at its job.

As an example, some of the techniques we used include:

  • SUSY – the subtext for this project says it all – “CSS Libraries are a bloated mess of opinions about how to do your job. Why let the table-saw tell you where to put the kitchen?”
  • Lazyr – Lazy loading of images keeps everything running smoother, especially on mobile
  • BEM methodology – Block Element Modifier is a methodology, that helps you to achieve reusable components and code sharing in the front-end.
  • SVG images – all around we use Scalable Vector Graphics. This especially makes sense on retina displays.

The result

It took us about 2.5 months of working on the website in tandem with client work to get it out the door. We launched the beta version at our 10-year anniversary party. A couple of our closest friends and partners got a glimpse, gave us feedback, and we improved on that feedback.

The team behind the website

The team behind the new website on stage at the Infinum 10-year party

The devil is in the details, and there is a bunch of special details scattered all around the site for you to find. We don’t want to give anything away, so browse for yourself and explore.

We hope you like it, and if you have any comments, drop us a line at hello@infinum.co.

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