BEST OF JANUARY: The First of 2015!

February 10, 2015 Josh Amer

Here’s a roundup of our favorite links from January:

ARTICLES TO READ
Seven B-to-B Marketing Trends That Will Shape 2015
This trends-spotting post points to ways in which b-to-b businesses will try to connect with their audiences. It includes things like storytelling and cohesive user experience that extends to all marketing channels and brand interactions.

B-to-b marketing must become more humanly relevant. As the digital tsunami of information continues to grow larger, business decision-makers are increasingly becoming numb. That’s why messages that leverage emotion — that make them feel something — will only become more vital.

Christoph Becker, Gyro

Why Nordstrom’s Digital Strategy Works (and Yours Probably Doesn’t)
This article is a bit retail focused, but includes great core principles. Nordstrom succeeds because specific technologies and platforms are part of the execution, not part of the strategy.

What makes [Nordstrom’s digital capabilities] important is that they are tightly integrated with all the parts of the business that ultimately serve the customer. This is not a matter of having the best apps, analytics, or social media tools. Instead, it’s a matter of tending to the details of building integrated digital capabilities…making the right data accessible, and simplifying processes.

Jeanne W. Ross, Cynthia M. Beath and Ina Sebastian, Harvard Business Review

2015 Content Marketing Trends – Our Bullish & Bearish Report
Rather than simply stating what’s going to be trending, this article looks at what will and won’t work in the coming months and year.

Bullish: Selective Social Media Strategy – Choosing the channels that fit your company’s needs based on audience, time, and resources. Specialize your content and dedicate time and staff to manage channels in a way that is reflective of your brand and responsive to your audience.

Kate Hagan, Content Harmony

Top 3 IA Questions about Navigation Menus
While there are no answers to these questions that fit every engagement, these are some great thoughts from Nielson Norman Group on: what to do with mega menus in the era of touch and responsive design, the number of items to include in navigation and navigation ordering.

The number and order of navigation categories, and use of hover menus for touchscreens are frequently asked questions that arise when organizing information on a website or application.

Kathryn Whitenton, Nielsen Norman Group

DESIGN TO EXPLORE
Bloomberg
Bloomberg really pushes the envelop in terms of design for a pretty serious media organization. I like the reading experience here – it’s cleaner and uses a pageless design to encourage continued engagement. You can read more about how Bloomberg got here in this article.

Bloomberg Business Site

VW Configurator
Volkswagen has always been cutting edge in its digital efforts – particularly internationally. The latest is a car configuration tool aimed at its customers in Mexico. The site pushes my 11th grade Spanish skills to the limit (challenges my math skills a bit, too) but more than that, it is a really cool web app. The experience is fun and engaging.

VW Configurator

Muji – Right Angle Socks
This site uses a long-page approach with elements loading at just the right time to communicate the “why” for buying these socks as the visitor scrolls down the page.

Muji

The Dawn Wall
The NY Times takes its love of storytelling and web experiments 3D with this piece.

The Dawn Wall - NY Times

That’s it for this month! Be sure to check back monthly to see more of our “Best of” Series.

Want to see more of the best? Explore some of the past posts we’ve had in the series to see what you may have missed.

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Josh Amer Strategist

At the time of publishing, Josh was a Strategist at One North.

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