Tag Archives: Twitter

Set Up a Facebook Fan Page That Works

I’ve recently come across a few really creative FB Fan pages! This inspired me to tweak my FB page to look better. (still working on it) So I started searching the Internet for good “how to” ideas. Unfortunately, I didn’t really find great information that addressed what I was looking for (something with more graphic elements) However, I did find the post below which I thought was well written and worth sharing. Let me know if you know of any good sites on custom design of FB Fan pages.

Post by Dean Rieck “Direct Creative Blog”

I’ve been talking to several people recently about setting up a Facebook fan page, how to get more fans, and how to use Facebook effectively.

Full disclosure: Yes, I have a Facebook page, but it’s private. I use Twitter and LinkedIn for business, but I haven’t set up a page for my copywriting business.

However, I DO run a Facebook page for the same nonprofit that I mentioned in a recent post on email marketing. It’s performing well, averaging 50 new fans a day.

The first thing people ask me is what type of account is best? A group or a fan page? For me, that’s simple. A fan page. Why? A post on Mashable about the difference between Facebook pages and groups lays out the differences nicely. Here’s a summary:

Groups are great for organizing on a personal level and for smaller scale interaction around a cause. Pages are better for brands, businesses, bands, movies, or celebrities who want to interact with their fans or customers without having them connected to a personal account, and have a need to exceed Facebook’s 5,000 friend cap.

A fan page lets you grow as big as you want, send updates to an unlimited number of people, and keep the focus on the organization without revealing the administrator (unless you want to).

Okay, so once you’ve set up your account as a fan page, then what? Here are some tips:

Upload a logo or photo with a web address at the bottom. It won’t be clickable, but fans can see where to go if they want to visit your website.

Fill out your info page completely. Here you can have a clickable web address, company overview, mission, and products. You can give only what Facebook asks for or get creative and provide other information as well.

For example, in your company overview, you can list links to pages on your website, your newsletter signup form, other social media, or whatever you want.

Use FBML to create a landing page. FBML is Facebook’s version of HTML, which you can use with an application called Static FBML. This lets you render basic HTML in a box or tab on your page. You won’t find it in your default applications, but you can find it with a search in the application directory.

The idea is that instead of sending people to your wall, as most people do, you send them to a landing page with whatever message you want to provide. For example, you can give a short description of your organization and tell people to click the “become a fan” button.

This is one of those “duh” things you may not think about at first, but which can dramatically increase your Facebook growth. A landing page is just good direct marketing.

Click link below for full post.

How to set up a Facebook fan page that works.

Smart Phones and Kids: What Parents Need to Know!

Trying to stay on top of technology seems like a losing race to most of us. Thank goodness for geeks! Especially tech geeks who can break down concepts in plain old basic language. God bless them!. . . So when I  find enlightening post about tech toys, I feel obliged to share. Great information for anyone with a wireless family plan –  Bohemian Home Journal

Post by Jennifer Jolly – December 2012

Handing over a shiny new smartphone or tablet to a youngster is like giving them keys to a sports car and wishing them luck on the freeway. In this TECH NOW, find out how to head off inappropriate content, over-use and even Internet predators with simple steps that even a non-techie parent can manage.

Set the rules. Have a heart-to-heart about the rules of cyber-conduct. Let them know this is about keeping them safe, which is your job as a parent. Print out, sign and post a family Internet contract so that expectations and consequences are clear.

Set up content filters. You can set up filters that even your tech-savvy teens can’t hack through.

Android, Apple and Windows devices have settings or apps that with just three to five steps let you “set and forget” a list of filters. You can password-protect your settings, too, so that your kids can’t (easily) outsmart you and undo them.

Install surveillance software. The next level of protection is surveillance — with the understanding that you’re using these tools to protect, inform and empower your kids, not to spy on them. After all, teens need to learn about the trust, respect and privacy that comes with growing up. For free filters, try K9 Web Protection. It blocks sites in more than 70 categories, including pornography, gambling, drugs,violence/hate/racism, malware/spyware and phishing.

Additionally, the FTC this week said it is investigating whether some apps violate kids’ privacy rights by quietly collecting personal information and sharing it with advertisers and data brokers. The FTC recommends these six steps for parents:

— Try out the apps your kid wants to use so that you understand the content and the features.

— Use device and app settings to restrict a kid’s ability to download apps, make purchases through the app or access other material.

— Turn off your Wi-Fi and carrier connection using “airplane mode” to disable any interactive features, prevent inadvertent taps and block access to material you haven’t approved.

Turn off your Wi-Fi and carrier connection using “airplane mode” to disable any interactive features, prevent inadvertent taps and block access to material you haven’t approved.

— Look for statements about whether the app or anything within the app collects kids’ personal information. If you can’t find disclosures or assurances that information collection and sharing is limited, consider a different app.

— Check whether the app connects to social media, gaming platforms or other services that enable sharing photos, video or personal information or chatting with other players. If so, see if you can block or limit those connections.

— Talk to your kids about your rules for downloading, purchasing and using apps, and sharing information online. And make sure you tell them why it matters.

Jennifer Jolly is an Emmy award-winning consumer tech contributor and host of USA Today’s new daily digital TECH NOW . Email her at techcomments@usatoday.com. Follow her on Twitter: @JenniferJolly


Leandro Dominguez Fall 2012

Argentinian designer Leandro Dominguez aims to represent a textile narrative in his collections. I can honestly live in every single one of these pieces from the warm, earth toned knitwear to the nature-inspired printed jackets and pants. So effortlessly chic! Continue reading

Laughing Raven Studio: Interview with Jeff Hendrickson

Meet Jeff Hendrickson, Proprietor of Laughing Raven Studio. Jeff has a wide-ranging background in the arts; photographer, textile and clothing designer, generative art creator, graphic designer, branding specialist, web designer, speaker, web design instructor and pretty darn nice guy!

Val:  “Jeff, you have such a versatile background, was this a planned road map in your career?”

Jeff:  “First let me say thanks for this opportunity.  I love to be able to share what I do and how I do it with others.  Moving along – yes, in my own crazy way this is my road map.  My entire professional career has been about visual stimulus.  What usually hits us first is what we see.  Someone is walking towards us down the street and we notice what they’re wearing, their hair, or the look in their eyes.  We pick up a book and we do absolutely judge it by its cover.  We walk into a gallery and we immediately start a conversation with the works hanging on the walls.  So what I do is make the clothes and the textiles that a person can put on and feel good about.  The graphics for a book or CD cover draw a person into that product.  And the art hanging on the wall moves someone, somehow.  If I’ve created something that moves people positively, then I’m a happy camper.”

Val: “What artistic area did you find most challenging?”

Jeff: “I have to say quite honestly that none of the processes are challenging in a negative way – I don’t view any of this as work.  Most of it is effortless for me.  My challenges usually come in adhering to restraints that’ve been put on a project, be that very strict direction on what colors can be used for a textile collection, or font limitations for a graphics project.  Any time someone tells me I have to color inside the lines I scream.  Well, to myself anyway.  I really do play nice.”

Val: “Tell me about the work you do now?”

Jeff: “Oh boy Val, how do I explain this?  Let’s talk about the art I’m currently creating – that’s the most exciting and relevant to me now.  I start off with an interesting photograph that I’ve either taken while driving – with my smartphone – or while walking around on a trip up to Brooklyn, which is where a lot of my work comes from.  Anything that catches my eye gets recorded.  I’m really into architecture and built forms and structures so a lot of the pieces start with those types of subjects.  I then open one up in Photoshop, tear it apart, and put it all back together again, piece by piece, using different filters and effects for each layer.  Most recently, I’ve started using work I do in Generative Art – art created using mathematical algorithms and variables – as custom filters.  I lay them into separate layers and use different transparency types that react in some really cool ways with the different layers of the photo work.  It’s a very dynamic process, sometimes involving parts from a few different photos, and some of the pieces have taken me a week or so to complete. ” 

Val: “If a client were considering a total branding package, what do they need to consider before meeting with you?”

Jeff: “First thing to look at is what the currently have and use.  Fonts.  Colors.  Stationery.  Current website.  Client types.  Roles of key business personnel.  Types of products.  Domestic or international?  Anything and everything about what they are sitting with currently.  If that’s nothing, and this is the very beginning of them moving out into the world, I get a read on their business philosophy first.  I start all clients by having them write a CPR – Context.  Purpose.  Results. Start with results.  What do you want this work to bring to you?  More clients?  Bigger paychecks?  Prestige?  A new Mercedes?  Whatever it is, write it down – no less than 15, worded as “I want xxx, so that…”.  This leads to purpose.  The dominant words and phrases from the results get distilled into a purpose, which can be a sentence or two.  From there, we get the context – the higher purpose so to speak.  The battle cry of the business and what it is that you truly stand for and represent to your clients/customers. Once all this is gathered, I write a loose proposal so that we make sure we’re all on the same page.  I talk about current trends I’m seeing, and will discuss whether or not they care about what their competition is doing.  You’d be surprised how many people want to copy directly from a competitor.  If they insist, I usually turn down the job.  It’s unethical and unimaginative.  Design is about imagination and the guts to move on it.”

Val: “What projects have you collaborated on recently?”

Jeff: “I’m working with an artist in Trinidad, Tracey Chan.  We started following each other on Twitter about two years ago.  I’d retweet her stuff, she’d retweet mine.  We both admired each other’s work and one day I put it out there that we try something together.  We created a Dropbox folder and each put ideas in there.  I put some Generative Art things in that she really liked so we went forward with that.  I sent her the code, taught her how to use it, and then we each created new work, which we then put together in Photoshop to come up with finished pieces.  The bottom-line goal was a show in early spring of this year so we submitted three triptyches to the Brooklyn Artists Gym in Gowanus and got accepted for a show called “Chromophilia” which ran the first two weeks in March.  It’s an unbelievable thrill to get accepted to show in NYC.  I went up for the opening and quite a few friends came.  It was a very magical night to say the least.”

Val: “Are there benefits to collaborating with other artists?”

Jeff: “Yeah, absolutely.  Two minds come together with different ideas towards a common goal.  Each brings a unique aspect to the team and if you start with an alignment the results can really be great.  I think a lot of heart to heart talk needs to happen first though.  Just jumping in, while it could produce some great work, is more fraught with disaster than if the artists are honest and upfront about what they want and everyone agrees on a path forward.”

Val: “Do you have favorite work tools, toys and software when doing your creative thing?”

Jeff: “Sure do.  Illustrator and Photoshop are my constant companions.  I’ve started using Illustrator lately to layout shows.  I take pictures of the gallery before hand and then mockup what I want by putting my stuff up on the walls.  I use Processing, Context Free, and Structure Synth for the gen art work, and a couple of different fractal generating programs, SpangFractal and Endlos Fractals.  The Art Director’s Toolkit is indispensable for quick work with calculations and colors, and Evernote is what I use to keep all notes and ideas for projects.  My camera is an Olympus PEN EPL2 and a lot of my current photo work comes from my Android smartphone.”

Val: “What are some personal projects you have going on now?”

Jeff: “I’m getting ready for a show in June, at the First Fridays thing that’s done in Falls Church, VA.  I’ll be at Fall Properties, a really cool boutique real estate company that’s office is like a gallery.  Each show turns over the first Friday of the month and the wall space is great.  I’ll have 16 pieces there.  A few other possibilities for shows this year are in the works too. Also in works are a lot of textile designs with my partners in NYC and a men’s shirting line with them as well.  My textile design library currently sits at about 3000 designs and new design ideas have been coming out of my gen art work. “One current design project is graphics and a new website for Mean Green Media in DC.”

Jeff: “Wow!  That was a great interview Val!  I hope I didn’t talk too much, but you know how excited I get to talk about this stuff.  You’re a creative too so you know that we do these things because we must.  There is no alternative and there is no end.  The rush I get when someone puts on a jacket that I designed, or hangs a piece of my art on their wall, is icing on the cake.  It lets me know that what I do matters to someone, and I like that feeling.”

Val:  Thanks Jeff, I love your work!  Looking forward to seeing new designs in upcoming shows!

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