Category: Web Design & Development

React Training

Training 4 Development giving Posture’s development team the “low down”

This past week we put the development in professional development! Our dev team completed an intense week-long training that sharpened their coding skills in React, Redux, and Typescript. Web design and development are constantly changing so it’s important to stay on top of the trade’s trends. We’re constantly trying to find new ways to improve our brand’s strategies and help them improve, so we’re glad we got to learn some new tricks from Training 4 Development.


SEO: The Internet’s Dewey Decimal System

SEO: The Internet’s Dewey Decimal System

 

Posture Interactive SEO library
In the Google-plex universe of the internet terms like SEO, API, and algorithm are thrown around, but what does it all mean and why is that important to you as a customer?

Internet jargon is all the rage nowadays, but it’s shrouded in mysterious overtones. In the Google-plex universe of the internet terms like SEO, API, and algorithm are thrown around, but what does it all mean and why is that important to you as a customer? First, it should be noted what SEO stands for: Search Engine Optimization.Put simply: SEO is  the underlying system that helps search engines create relevant results on websites like Google.com. Even that sounds vague and very intangible, though. It becomes a lot easier to understand when you think about it in terms of physical objects.

So let’s imagine the whole internet is in a library, and all the books within the library are the websites that inhabit them. These books have images, text, and tons of info within them that are managed by the Dewey Decimal System. When you look for a book at a library, the librarian can look up the book on their computer or uses the Dewey Decimal System, which is a system created to organize books by their subject. When it comes to the internet,  you have Search Engines like Google or Bing instead of a librarian. Rather than using numbers to find your website, like the Dewey Decimal System, these search engines use metadata. Metadata is the information that defines what kind of topics are within websites. Meta is a Greek derived term meaning “beside” or “alongside.” So its all the data that naturally appears alongside a website as its developed that gives it content

All of this content has to be logged and indexed in search engines like a book would if it were to show up in the dewey decimal system.

…its all the data that naturally appears alongside a website as its developed that gives it content

Best practices these days consist of someone combing through and editing the metadata to correctly inform the Search Engines what all the content is, or the search engine will define it however it sees fit (or sometimes not a all). So it’s important to have someone go through and make sure the content throughout the website is correctly formatted to communicate with the Search Engine effectively to show relevant results for the customer.

You might be thinking: why do I need someone else to do that for me? First, you might need to edit direct HTML in the websites code. It’s not impossible, but can sometimes be risky, frustrating, and time consuming. Someone who is intimately involved with websites can do this more quickly and efficiently. Secondly, there are ethical guidelines for the internet’s metadata. Back when Google started out, you could simply trick the search engine into  bringing your results up first by jamming a bunch of keywords into your metadata (known now as black hat SEO and VERY much frowned upon). This meant your end user might get unrelated results because someone packed their website with poor quality metadata.

Google is a little bit more complicated now, and uses an algorithm that actually tries to get around these SEO tricks that manipulate the search engines. Google actually encourages people to report improper use of SEO, so its important to keep your metadata ethical and full of truthful and quality information.

Have any questions or need help with your SEO, drop us a line: Contact Posture


Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of the Internet

Well, Google, net neutrality affects everyone.

As we celebrate our independence, we couldn’t help but think a bit on this summer’s changes in rules regarding a “free” internet. On June 11, when net neutrality officially expired, and we were trying to find the latest updates , Google suggested: “How does that affect you?” Well, Google, net neutrality affects everyone. it’s just that the internet is so populated with news sources reporting different aspects, that the “how” gets drowned out. It seems no one knows what to make of it.

Here at Posture, we are most interested in what it means for us as a team and the clients we serve. Will it slow traffic to the web applications we create? How will we know? Will it limit people’s access? How will clients need to evolve in order to stay current with any trends or consequences that result from the Net Neutrality expiration? For the most part we don’t have definitive answers. We do however, have a hell of a lot of ideas.

The internet was created as a government program during the Cold War to bypass wired communication, in the event of an attack. Essentially, the government set up what we would call servers in order to send and receive very limited amounts of information. These bits of information would later be used to transmit scientific data, and later the servers would expand and grow to become the “World Wide Web.”

Essentially, the government set up what we would call servers in order to send and receive very limited amounts of information.

At the time of its creation, the World Wide Web was the epitome of human communication, and obviously in many ways it still is. The expiration of net neutrality marks an end of the World Wide Era in the context of information freely flowing without limit.

Now,companies and profits can be prioritized for certain levels or access to services instead of the users being free to experience any service they wish. Many companies made statements assuring customers of their loyalty to customers. It’s a hard place to be, the crux of two impasses: customer loyalty and making money.

At Posture, we want our clients to be happy, which means we provide the best possible products and services in order to fulfill their goals. We expect no less of our internet providers. We’ll keep our information on this topic free flowing as we learn more.

At Posture, we want our clients to be happy, which means we provide the best possible products and services in order to fulfill their goals.

Validation is Nice. Recognition is Humbling. Let’s Push Further. Posture Interactive at the Addys.


TL;DR : Posture won some awards at the Addys, enlightenment ensues.


This past weekend our agency had a stunning experience at this year’s American Advertising Awards, the annual ceremony where creativity’s effectiveness, judged by folks we respect & recognize, is acknowledged and ultimately rewarded for excellence at the Addys 2018.

Posture Interactive - American Advertising Awards - AAF Scranton Addys 2018
(L to R) Mat Giordano, Robert Jones, Kathryn Bondi, Tony Bartocci, Jean Carlos Cedré, Joey Zarcone, Charles Ferran. Not pictured: Kevin O’Boyle, Doug Griffiths

 

Now that it’s been a few days, I’ve had a bit of time to try and understand what that night signifies for our team, processing how we got here, and looking forward to where we’re headed. I apologize in advance for the windy road below and appreciate the time your eyeballs are on loan to these words….

This year’s Addy awards yielded us the type of acknowledgement that gravity sort of pushes down onto you like humid air…a blissful, nervous, overwhelming, ultimately self-conscious state of being where you aren’t sure what to do or say, how to feel or what to make of it.


Posture Interactive - American Advertising Awards - AAF Scranton

We ultimately won eight awards (listed below in order of category – client – award):

  • Sales Kit – Marzio – Silver Addy Award
  • Collateral Materials – Metz Culinary “Our Recipe” Employee Guide – Silver Addy Award
  • Packaging Campaign – Electric City Roasting Co. Cold Label Packaging – Gold Addy Award
  • Branded Content Entertainment Campaign – Breaking Benjamin Social Teaser Video Campaign – Gold Addy Award
  • Digital Self Promotion – Posture Interactive Company Website – Gold Addy Award
  • Judge’s Choice – Electric City Roasting Co. Cold Label Packaging
  • People’s Choice – Electric City Roasting Co. Cold Label Packaging
  • Best in Show – Breaking Benjamin Social Teaser Video Campaign

Addys 2018 Takeaway #1 – Validation is Nice. 

To a certain extent, falling into the category of recognition for anything that we put out the door makes me do a double take. Years and years ago when we formed this little strange-brew human triad of a designer, a programmer + and a business director, we had no idea how we were going to *do* anything.

We didn’t have much, but we had what we needed.

We had a strong, rapidly evolving knowledge base of core design and development beliefs and best “practices” with the chops to back it up. We had a deep, neural understanding of the need to execute the client’s vision in their best interest no matter what, and ultimately how to build the foundation of long-term, healthy business relationships.

Posture was built culture-first. I don’t care how freakishly talented some rock star developer is. If they are an asshole, I don’t want to be around them a bazillion hours a day (and I certainly don’t want to make cool shit with them). If we can we have a conversation that produces something meaningful, and the skillset is chasing close behind, we’ll gladly cultivate that mindset and grow *with* you. The rest is cake: Just don’t be a dick.

This many years later, I never dreamed I would be so fortunate to have had the opportunity to hire and surround myself with such talented people that are just…*better* than me in every sense of the word: I’m made aware & encouraged every day to be a better artist & builder & thinker, to develop more tasteful business acumen, and to strive to actually become the person I’m prone to convince myself I think I am.

I get to work and grow with these incredibly talented people every day to produce some of the most creative, challenging, and engaging solutions our clients have come to know and depend on us for.

It was only after I ran this dialogue back in my head (quite a few times) that I was able to get a grip on why people put so much weight on being validated and why it matters.

When I wrap a project, if I’m cool with it and it has met or exceeded the client’s business objectives, that’s as far as I can let myself define a “success” for our team. Taking some time the past few days to dig into how I reflect on work we complete, more often than not at some uncomfortably blistering pace, makes me think I need to be open to understanding and accepting validation more in general.

Posture Interactive - American Advertising Awards - AAF Scranton

We work in an incredibly competitive, feverishly paced industry. These awards represent projects that span the breadth of our core competencies and were in some way or another touched by every single team member doing the best that they possibly could to help make our clients successful.

I realize now that these awards signify that *in addition* to meeting our client’s goals and helping write their success story, our work is being appreciated by other creative talent in our industry as well…peers that understand the hustle and what good hard work is when you see it.

If this is what feeling validated is like, sign me up all day. 


Recognition is Humbling.

This speaks for itself, but we are truly humbled to have been recognized to this degree by the American Advertising Federation. A jury of fellow creatives singling out our work out of the battering ram of submissions is incredibly rewarding and we couldn’t be more grateful.

None of it really comes easy for any of us, and I’ll spare you the cliché agency nonsense masquerading as team-building or business growth …such gems as “Excellence is a habit”, or “you can’t choose which projects you go all in on or which you push through the pipe – go all in every time and be inspired!”……it’s all bullshit.

We’re a team and a family. We fight, bicker, bitch and moan. We burn ourselves out on the grandest of scales. We’re all incredibly guilty of not seeing beyond the closest Deadline o’Clock coming full throttle, but also staring it right down to not only our own mental nerve-endings but of those around us as well. It’s intense, it’s challenging, it’s relentless, and I wonder on occasion how we didn’t implode or collapse on ourselves completely by now…

Posture Interactive - American Advertising Awards - AAF Scranton

Why is calling ourselves out like this so important? Humility. It’s all rooted in Posture’s commitment to getting the absolute best solution for the visions and goals that we are fortunate enough to be trusted with by our clients.

My mind loses sight of that, and we just need to remind ourselves every now and again that we are never pushing for the *wrong* solution, or the *easy* way out when it gets tough. We are pushing for the new, the best, the most abstract, the brightest…we’re pushing further.

We were recognized and rewarded for our take on the creative spirit of excellence in the art of advertising.

I can’t tell you how proud that makes me to say, and with just a smidge less self-consciousness this time around the bend.


Let’s Push Further.

We look forward to what this year may bring, having the opportunity to be pushing new boundaries, exploring new tech, creating new types of content and solutions for our clients…virtual reality, 360° video, Blockchain development…the sky is the limit, and I’m looking for 2018 to be a pretty rad year.

About the American Advertising Awards/ADDYs

Conducted annually by the American Advertising Federation (AAF), the local chapter is the first of a three-tier, national competition. Concurrently, all across the country, local entrants vie to win ADDY Awards – recognition as the very best in their markets.

All local Golds get automatically forwarded to the second tier where they compete against winners from other local clubs in one of 15 district competitions. District ADDY winners are then forwarded to the third tier, the national stage of the American Advertising Awards.

The ADDYs 2018 is the advertising industry’s largest and most representative competition, annually attracting more than 40,000 entries.


In It for the Long Haul – v3

Think it. Build it. Ship it. Tweak it.

So here we are, late 2017, and the first iteration of our new web presence is officially out there. To me, Posture v3 really wasn’t just another redesign. This was a vehicle to show how we’ve grown, how our team works together, how the scale and process of the work we’ve done has increased and improved, and most importantly as a vessel to convey how we help & work with our clients throughout a project cycle and the journey that follows.

 

 

We have obstacles, failures and successes throughout our projects, and feel we demonstrate admirable problem-solving skills quickly when under the gun.

We have become partners in crime with our clients. We use collaborative tools to manage our workflow alongside their internal teams. We are a resource to offer perspective and ultimately solutions when a new project arises.

We are trusted to take on complex projects and manage their digital presence, no matter the scale or requirements.

This evolution of Posture Interactive is the beginning of a much larger story we are telling. Iterative, organic…a pulsing piece of our culture you can feel if you dive in.

Our goal now is to treat this new home on the web much like a software product – we have our MVP (minimum viable product) now, the bare bones basics to be built and iterated upon.

As we release v3.1, 3.2 and so on our goals will align, we will identify improvement points with the site, how to better design for our users when we are trying to get them to complete an action, and what steps need to be taken to fix and maintain both.

Think it. Build it. Ship it. Tweak it.

I’m proud of where we are today, and we are only getting started…

_mat


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