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COMSTRAT 310 Syllabus - Fall 2017

COMSTRAT 310 - DIGITAL CONTENT PROMOTION (3 CREDITS) Instructor:  Brett Atwood                                EMAIL:    batwood@wsu.ed...

WEEK 6: Wireframing & Design Explorations

SUMMARY:
This week, we will:
  • Learn the basics of web design and wireframing
  • Create a wireframe of a proposed website for our campaign
  • Review our various homepage wireframes to identify and review key features that are necessary for our campaign website.
  • Begin to learn content management systems and website creation tools, such as Wix or Wordpress, that can be used to build an original campaign website.
HOMEWORK:
  • Create a wireframe for the homepage of your website using Gliffy.
  • Use your selected website creation tool to build an original website for your campaign. For this week, you will get started with the site – but the actual completion of it won’t be due for several weeks.

Wireframing Basics and Learning Gliffy


A wireframe represents a visual sketch that can be used in planning your website design and functionality. It typically happens prior to the actual building of the website - so that you can review and refine key decisions prior to any actual coding or creation.






Gliffy.com enables you to build a "wireframe" and site maps for your website. This easy-to-use service can be used to sketch and create your wireframe on the web -- and then share your creation with other stakeholders. 

An example of the Gliffy.com interface and a wireframe.















You can use Gliffy.com for website wireframing, flow charts, org charts, site maps -- and even a SWOT Analysis!

Here are some example wireframes that you can print out and review:

WEEKS 4 & 5: Focusing our online identity: Logo creations and research

SUMMARY:

For these weeks, we will:
  • Explore and create various branded logo treatments for our campaign
  • Conduct a survey to identify key messaging and branding attributes for our campaign
HOMEWORK:
  • Make sure you have completed the SWOT analysis, competitive analysis and user personas
  • Use Photoshop or a free web logo creation service to create a logo for your brand.
  • Use an online survey tool to create a seven-question survey that aims to test the value propositions and sentiments associated with each brand name. (Optional):You can also use this tool to "test" what attributes and qualities people associate with multiple logo designs.
    • Once the survey is created, you should share it with your friends via Facebook or email. Each student should attempt to gather at least 20 responses from friends and family to your survey. (NOTE: Due to the limitations of this course, this is NOT meant to be a scientific survey. In the "real world," you would identify and/or even purchase a targeted survey response list to get a larger and more accurate response rate).

Social Media Campaigns: An Introduction



(If the above embedded PowerPoint lecture does not load, you can access it directly via this link: Social Media Campaigns: An Introduction
The above lecture contains a related audio file! You can download the audio track at this link. Please play the audio track while  advancing through these slides.
Related Links:

Free Event: Media Training on Suicide Reporting

Preventing Suicide is Everyone’s Business
Free training for media and communication leads
WHAT:          In recognition of Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, please join us for a free training on how words matter when reporting on suicide loss (see attached flyer).
Some suicide deaths may be newsworthy, but the language used to report suicide can influence the behavior of those reading it–especially those already at risk. Rena Fitzgerald, crisis services program manager with Volunteers of America, and Wendy Burchill, healthy communities specialist for the Snohomish Health District, will share tips and best practices on how to balance the public’s “right to know” against the risk of causing harm. Learn how words and phrases used in reporting can either increase or decrease the risk of additional suicides in the community.
WHERE:       Snohomish Health District’s Auditorium, located on the first floor at 3020 Rucker Ave., Everett
WHEN:          Wednesday, September 27 from 3 to 5 p.m.
WHO:            Media, public information officers, school newspapers, journalism students, etc.  
To register, please email Wendy Burchill at wburchill@snohd.org or call 425.339.8618.

Media Contact:        Heather Thomas, hthomas@snohd.org or 425.339.8688

Project Management Software - Introducing Trello


TRELLO FOR PROJECT MANAGEMENT

Stay organized using Trello, a free web-based service that allows you to organize and prioritize your campaign elements as a team.

Use Trello to create your content development and social media promotion calendar as a team. Assign tasks and track progress on current content productions. You can create neatly organized "cards" for each task. Move your card to a new column to reflect the production status.

Get started at Trello.com.

MOBILE APP VERSION

The following video shows you how Trello works on  your mobile phone, too!


TRAINING VIDEO:

The video below shows you the basics of how to get started with Trello:




Creating a Survey using PollDaddy

LEARNING POLLDADDY

A great survey tool is Polldaddy.com. Use Polldaddy for surveys or polls that include images. For example, you can use it to test logos for your brand.


Learn more about how to use Polldaddy at the following link:
Note: If you are an existing Wordpress user, you can use your Wordpress username/login info to "link" your account to Polldaddy. If not, you will be asked to create a new Wordpress login in order to sign up for the free Polldaddy service (which is owned by the same company).

HOMEWORK
  • Use an online survey tool to create a seven-question survey that aims to test the value propositions and sentiments associated with each brand name. You can also use this tool to "test" what attributes and qualities people associate with each of your proposed logo designs.
  • Once the survey is created, you should share it with your friends via Facebook or email. Each student should attempt to gather at least 20 responses from friends and family to your survey. (NOTE: Due to the limitations of this course, this is NOT meant to be a scientific survey. In the "real world," you would identify and/or even purchase a targeted survey response list to get a larger and more accurate response rate).

Choosing a Brand Name & Creating a Logo

Igor International has created a great Naming Guide with information that can help you demystify the process of creating a great brand name.

Per Igor's Naming Guide, some things to consider as you review possible brand names include:
  • Appearance
  • Distinctive
  • Depth
  • Energy
  • Humanity
  • Positioning (How well does it support your core positioning for the brand?)
  • Sound
  • "33" (As per Igor's guide, "The force of brand magic and the word-of-mouth buzz that a name is likely to generate. Refers to the mysterious "33" printed on the back of Rolling Rock beer bottles...")
To get started, we'll be using a few web-based resources that will help us to:
  • Identify a Brand Name
  • Create a Logo

Brand Name Creation
Trademarkia.com is the largest visual search engine for more than 6 million trademarked logos, names, and slogans on the Internet. Use Trademarkia to identify whether or not your proposed brand name is already registered.

Logo Creation
There are several options to creating your logos. If you are comfortable using Adobe Photoshop, you can use it to craft suggested logos.

However, many people lack the graphic design skills in Photoshop. If this is the case, then you can use one of several web-based "logo generator" services. Wix.com has a great blog post with suggestions on how to cheaply (if not free) create a logo:
Here are a few more suggestions:

CoolText.com
It doesn't get any simpler. Simply type in your brand name and select the design style and a logo is immediately generated. Visit cooltext.com to get started.

Flamingtext.com
As with cooltext.com, this is very basic and easy to use. Select your text and preferred design and you are given a logo! There are some intermediate design options to explore, too. Visit Flamingtext.com to begin.

Logomaker.com

LogoMaker.com is a simple-to-use, web-based logo creation tool. Use LogoMaker to experiment with different branded logos for your fictional product, organization or company.  (Note: A small fee may be required for exporting your creations in LogoMaker).




WEEK 3: Content Strategy Basics - Creating User Persona Research to Craft our Online Campaigns

SUMMARY:

This week, we will:
  • Review the fundamentals of content strategy for our campaigns
  • Review examples of user persona research and then apply these techniques to our campaign
  • Brainstorm and conduct trademark research on our campaign brand names
HOMEWORK:
  • Continue to tweak/revise your competitive analysis and SWOT analysis. This will be used to help shape and inform future branding and messaging elements, including social media outreach strategies. (NOTE: Branding and naming exercises will occur in the next couple of weeks).
  • This week, each campaign should also have at least three user persona research profiles for the audience that you anticipate targeting.
  • Identify at least three potential brand names for your product or service. It is critical that you conduct a quick background check on your proposed names on Trademarkia.com to ensure that your suggestions do not violate any existing active trademarks.

User Personas

Who is your target audience? Are there multiple target audiences for your brand or product?

Rather than think about these in broad, abstract terms, you can develop "user personas" to better visualize who your potential audience is.
Xtension is a free web-based user persona tool that you can use for this assignment

Orangebus, a U.K.-based digital agency, has created a great template that you can use to create your various user personas. Check it out (.pdf format) at:
More examples and templates to explore: