Websites fulfill some very important tasks in today’s world. First and foremost, they are the electronic version of a business card — providing name and contact information for a new vendor or client. But they can do so much more than a business card, and Hearken Creative has just finished two such sites.
HARVARD BUSINESS PRESS BESTSELLER
When Karen Berman and Joe Knight asked for a website that advertised the new edition of their bestselling book Financial Intelligence, I suggested doing things a little bit differently. Instead of creating a traditional site, maybe just a single page with some video and strong copy would be enough to draw people in — without overwhelming them with information. Using Premise landing page software from Copyblogger & Studiopress, and a backend theme from WooThemes (Canvas, specifically), we created a punchy landing page with a video of co-author Joe Knight talking about the book. Here is where it gets good…
The YouTube video (which Hearken Creative filmed and produced as well) is SEO-ready, so that it becomes a key driver of more eyeballs (remember, YouTube is almost as important as Google when it comes to search). In addition, video is much more enjoyable than simply reading a page of copy. The video also can get used in multiple streams:
- on YouTube,
- on the new landing page,
- on the client’s existing website,
therefore getting more bang for the buck of the dollars spent on video.
As stated, the previous edition of the book was already a bestseller (translated into over a dozen languages), so getting more traction for the new edition is simply icing on the cake. Still, a good landing page will help drive sales even further.
STICKING A TOE INTO THE E-COMMERCE RIVER
Longtime friend and colleague Alison Siewert has received accolades for writing short dramas seen at conferences and events. But she has never had a place to sell the scripts, which have recently been receiving more and more attention. So we created a website where those scripts can be downloaded — directly from the website — for a small fee.
The e-commerce solution was ready-made — again from WooThemes — and was relatively easy to set up. The site has already generated business, and we look forward to assisting Alison as she grows the business even further.
Both of these sites were designed and produced by Loren A. Roberts at Hearken Creative. Our multi-disciplinary approach allowed us to use the best tools available to come up with real-world solutions for our clients, including imagery, producing and editing video, and (as always) cutting-edge, award-winning graphic design.
We can take the same approach for your company as well. Call us today at 626-396-1500 to talk about your online needs.
Bill Nye tweeted a picture of himself with the newest issue of the magazine. I’ll upload higher resolution pictures of it in a few days.
I’m a firm believer in Copyblogger’s usefulness. It’s one of the blogs that I read on an almost-daily basis. Unpaid plug…
The December 2011 issue of The Planetary Report went out at the end of the year. The final issue of the year is historically a “year-in-pictures” issue, and this issue did not disappoint with some truly stunning images splayed across the pages of the magazine.
I was very happy with the work of our printer (The Dot Printer in Irvine, CA); they worked hard to capture my intent with each picture.
When I get a minute (kinda busy right now), a few people have asked for a “before/after” comparison: what we did in the redesign to give the magazine a new identity. I would like to do that, although I must say that the design firm who did the magazine before HCS did a tremendous job for decades, so any “improvements” that I made truly attempted to take what had worked for years in the old magazine and bring it up to date.
But that will have to be in another blog post. For now, check out these beautiful spreads…
Join the Planetary Society today and get this magazine in your mailbox four times a year, and know that your donation goes towards space research, education, and advocating space within the governments of the world!
I don’t get to talk about the award-winning logos that Hearken Creative Services has produced over the years. And I’m waiting for client approval on a project this morning. So I thought I should upload a few that we have done:
We have actually done an update on this one, changing the typography to reflect the new organization. But the logomark still works wonderfully.
Included in the American Corporate Identity line of books.
These are just a few of the many successful logo design and re-design projects that we have worked on over the years. We have a long and successful track record of working with clients to
- determine need
- assess the values and strategies of the organization that should help shape the logo design process
- work with owners, management, and employees to come to consensus on marketing values
- present useful logo design strategies and work through the revision process, on time and on budget
- complete fulfilment of digital and physical artwork for use by other design firms as well as internal staff
We would love to work with you on your next logo design project.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE : October 2011
Planetary Society Headquarters, Pasadena, CA
Hearken Creative (www.hearkencreative.com) of Pasadena, CA is proud to announce a historic magazine redesign — the first in the magazine’s 31-year history. The Planetary Report is a highly-regarded quarterly member magazine, bringing space research and advocacy news to 50,000 readers worldwide and commissioned by the Planetary Society of Pasadena, CA. The first two redesigned issues were released in June 2011 and October 2011.
The Planetary Report was introduced soon after the Planetary Society was launched in 1980 by scientist/author Carl Sagan, JPL/Caltech professor Bruce Murray, and JPL scientist Louis Friedman. The desire for a new look and focus prompted incoming executive director Bill Nye to turn to Loren A. Roberts of Hearken Creative for a complete re-design of the magazine, including adding a brand new kids’ section that capitalizes on the Bill Nye the Science Guy™ brand.
“Loren gave our 31-year-old magazine a beautiful new look,” said Bill Nye, executive director of the Planetary Society. “Beautiful pictures just jump out at you, and the text is mysteriously easier than before to read. We are delighted with his work.”
“It’s an honor for us to assume the creative mantle for a magazine seen around the world,” said Loren A. Roberts, principal of Hearken Creative. “We are proud of the Planetary Society’s mission, and our partnership with them over fourteen years; and we look forward to this new chapter in our history together.”
The relationship between the Society and Hearken Creative began in 1997 when Roberts designed all of the graphics for Planetfest’97, a convention where tens of thousands of people watched Mars Pathfinder land on Mars using a real-time link from JPL at the Pasadena Convention Center. All printed graphics, banners, signage, advertising, and online graphics were designed by Hearken Creative. Since then the partnership has grown, with Hearken Creative designing t-shirts, logos, posters, websites, brochures and more for the Society. Continue Reading →
So I’m on the board of the Pasadena Musical Theatre program, and we get to do all sorts of fun and cool stuff. In addition to year-round programs, we put on two big musicals every summer — one for 4th-6th graders, and one for 7th-12 graders. So here’s what I get to do:
All postcards and posters and such are developed by me, in concert with the directors. Here is the keyart for the two shows this summer:
The Jasper in Deadland keyart was developed with strong direction from the composer/conductor, Ryan Scott Oliver, because this is his baby. I’m very excited to be helping him bring this original musical to life.
PRODUCT & BRAND DESIGN
As part of the story for Jasper in Deadland, the protagonist crosses the river Lethe (get out your mythology books!) and keeps getting offered Lethe™ Brand water, so we decided that we needed to offer Lethe™ Brand products as well.
It’s a clever, simple brand, but people are loving it, and I expect that we’ll see tote bags and water bottles with this logo all around campus in a week or two…
I have found a way to use the Canon 7D for quick, news-gathering-style video: 1) simply accept the limitations of the on-board microphone, and 2) stop the iris down a little so things don’t go out of focus so quickly. And so, every day of the program, we have posted a 2-minute recap, showing warmups, rehearsals, discussions, and antics of the kids in the program. It’s a win-win for the families in the program: parents get to see what’s going on, students get to show their day off to their friends, and PMTP gets added exposure through the hundreds of views we have gotten on Youtube. Here are two of the most popular recaps so far:
Filming these giving me a chance to understand how to choose shots quickly and follow the action. Everything is handheld except for performance video.
IN OTHER NEWS
Tomorrow (I hope) I’m going to roll out a press release announcing one of the newest projects that I have been working on. We’re very proud of the design work that Hearken Creative is doing these days, and I can’t wait to update my portfolio. It’s just a busy time of year for us!
Wow, I’m so excited. We will issue a press release sometime in the next few hours.
Wow, I had a blast today. We are currently working on a CD packaging design for Shakedown Mambo’s upcoming album, and to support that effort we shot some photos of the duo — Rick and Phil. Some iconic shots here (click on any image to get the larger sized lightbox):
Can’t wait to show you the rest of the CD package, as soon as it’s done. These guys sound as good as they look!