With our latest website design, I took a slightly different approach. When I began the process, which was about a week ago, we had a Crowdspring logo project being worked on parallel to the website design.As the logo was being created, I started out by looking at random websites on the net. Like a sponge, I wanted to soak up as many ideas as possible and convert that to inspiration, which I could then mix with my own expertise. After about an hour of browsing, I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted to do. I grabbed a fat black marker and a piece of paper. I slid the keyboard to the side and started sketching. At this point, it's semi-high level design.
As I was sketching, I changed my mind on a few things, hence the scribbles. This sketch literally took no more than ten minutes and then I was ready to jump into Adobe Fireworks and start mocking this thing up.Although we were pretty strict with the color combinations we wanted, a few artists submitted logos with alternate choices and at first, they influenced my design. We never used red before, so I gave it a try with a rough logo that a designer submitted at Crowdspring. I wanted to see if his logo would work with our design. Here is what I came up with.
From there the team here discussed each area of the design. We ended up cutting a lot of stuff out and adding a few new things at the same time. After sleeping on the color red, we had second thoughts and went back to our original color scheme. After a few more mockups and discussions, we ended up going with this design and logo. The logo took about a week to get designed and the website was done in about two to three days. The third day, I sliced up the design and wired it up in an ASP.NET MasterPage with CSS driving layout.
Tags: haulix, design, mockups, fireworks, crowdspring
In celebration of our new website, we are offering 1-month of FREE services to anyone who registers between now and July 2, 2010.Combined with our 30-day free trial, you will get 2-months of free service total before your first payment is due. Cancel at any time.To sign up, visit our price plan page and select a plan. Upon registering, enter the coupon code HAULIX2010 for the 2 months of free service.Cheers!
Here is a well written article on the debate over watermarking and digital promos written by Mike Riggs.http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/display.php?id=37563I commented underneath the article. I'd also like to add here, that we have done everything in our power and will continue to address the journalist experience when using our digital service. We haven't forgotten about you and the reason we understand you, is because we have been in your shoes before with other ventures.How?- Our watermarks are undectible by the ear and the sound quality is still top notch- Contacts that get invited through Haulix, don't have to remember login/passwords and will never have to fill out a long registration form- We have a sophisticated way of bundling all labels' promos on one page if a contact gets invited by more than one label - yet all accounts stay separate and secureMedia contacts simply click a link in an invitation, initiate the promo download and then go back to doing what they do best, writing great reviews and articles for their publications.
Tags: haulix, watermarking
Running a popular music webzine outside of Haulix, I get emails almost daily from record labels and artists that go like this:"Hello, this is ____________ with _______________. We mailed you an album two weeks ago and we were wondering if you got it, and if so, are you planning on reviewing it? Any time frame on when the review will go up?"I'm not exaggerating when I say I get these daily. I then have to contact our site administrator and/or login to the site and check our review queue to see if indeed we did get the album and if any of the writers have reserved it to review. Then I have to send a reply back to the original emailer explaining the situation, and frankly, most of the time, we don't know where the album is - could still be in the mailbox or be enroute to the site administrator. Most of the time, it's lost in snail mail heaven or the site administrator has it, but hasn't processed it into our system yet. Point being, there's such a huge gray area where 1001 things can happen, with mixed results. It's such an unpredictable process.When designing Haulix, we put a lot of thought into the psychology behind the publicist and media contact roles. Sending out promotional material to media contacts is a full blown process. And in our case, as a large scale media contact, we spend a lot of time, resources and money on processing physical promos.With digital promos, you can tighten up that gray area of unpredictability. An analogy for this is like setting a cased CD with a new release in a white-boxed room on a table in the middle. There are video cameras on all four walls. They run 24/7 and never blink. And let's say there is a slight chance that the power goes off and a ninja sneaks in and steals the CD. Watermarking technology is like owning a custom finger print of everyone who has come into contact with that album. With those video cameras, you know who, what, where and when everything happens. Same concept goes for Haulix. In your dashboard, you see all actions performed throughout the system; even your own!Why mail promos to media contacts and then have to suffer and wait - wondering if the material made it to its destination and even more, if that destination opened it and intends on consuming it for their publication?
Logically, wouldn't it make more sense to provide a digital copy of a promo and invite contacts to login and consume it? Let them come to you, they get their music, you know exactly when they downloaded it and now you can better gauge when to expect a publication. The turn-around for this process versus the older way happens to be much faster too!
Tags: haulix, promos
**This list's "secure distribution system" verbiage references HAULIX**1. Save costs of having an in-house programmer or contracted consultant build a secure distribution system2. No software to install and updates are automatically applied with no extra cost3. Greatly decrease physical promotional media costs4. Faster publication turn around - if media contacts can get media faster, logically their publications should go up faster5. It's an easy way to take part in the "Going Green" movement6. Enforce strict anti-leaking tactics that can't be done with physical promos alone7. Create promos, monitor activity and invite media contacts to consume from anywhere in the world with an internet connection8. You'll have a much better awareness of who actually consumes your media versus wondering if it made it via the mail9. If some part of a promo has to change, do it in one spot, at any time, and all media contacts will benefit from the change immediately10. Easy exit strategy - if you want to discontinue the service for whatever reason, pulling the plug costs nothing and is only a couple clicks away
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