Posted on December 20th, 2010 by Jeff
I can definitely remember writing detailed lists of what I wanted from Jolly ‘Ole St. Nick as a kid. I don’t remember when that stopped and just turned into my folks asking repeatedly what I wanted, but somewhere’s along the way went my belief in him as well. I don’t recall that being a tumultuous event, but I’m sure it wasn’t fun. Anywho, that has little to do with my thoughts hereafter. I’m 29, and married, but I’m going to write my Christmas wishlist anyways, so here goes.
I know I sound like a nitpicky whiner when I say this, but it’s because I am, and that makes it okay. Or, more importantly, it’s an antiquated hit that just dates all those who use it. It also implies a complete lack of respect for the recipients on that list. Consider yourself in their shoes; how does this sound to you. Your favorite company, that you shop at every now and again, blasts email to you once every few days. They don’t segment or target their lists, they just take a giant swab and hope that a few people find the content relevant and buy / click / or take some desired action.
I’m not saying that all companies who use this term don’t do any kind of advanced email marketing, I’m sure lots do. But it’s just rubs me the wrong way — and it makes you sound very out of date. Or, it makes you sound like a bad jargon marketer who just cares about buzz words. Either way, it’s not showing respect for the recipient, and that’s what all email marketing is really about. Sure, you want to get money out of it, and I agree with that 100%, but without thinking about how email campaigns are beneficial to the recipient, you’re just asking for trouble.
Enough has already been written about this topic, including a great info-post about the history of said term. The term is from the print industry describing how newspapers place their most important content in the top half of their pages, the front page most notably. This makes complete sense, as being a print piece, it’s a fixed medium, and regardless of the reader, the content stays in the same place. On the web, we’re not nearly as lucky.
With the huge pick-up in mobile technology, there are so many devices that are web-accessible now it’s literally amazing. A website simply cannot cater to all of these devices unfortunately. Thus, there is no fold per say. I am not suggesting that we do not plan to have the absolute most important bits of content at the top of the page. But, too often we as designers are asked to put every bit of content in this small space, and that just doesn’t work. It crowds the content, makes it tougher to read, and reduces the effectiveness of a good Call-To-Action.
This one is a bit more personal, but I’d love to hand my hands on an invite to dribbble. Dribbble is a design community that is invite only, and thus keeps quality of design at the front and center. It’s really become quite a huge hit in the design community, and there are some amazingly talented designers on there. It’s become quite a hit that design association AIGA just ran a post poo-pooing the site; citing it’s lack of privacy for client work and over-sharing-ness. While I completely agree with the privacy concerns about sharing client work (again, why this want is for personal use), I just don’t agree with anything else said in the post. All the pieces I’ve seen on there have been personal, and the feedback has been very constructive. Just seems a bit under-handed to me, but that’s just me.
Most importantly, of course, I wish for all to have as warm and safe of a Holiday Season as possible. Cheers.
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