Some of our recent thinking

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A selection of some of the most useful articles from the 3Sixty blog.


<ul><li>1.UsefulBeautifulDigitalOur thinkingSummer2011</li></ul> <p>2. 2 Heres a collection of recent articles penned by some of the experts at 3Sixty. We hope you find them useful. For the most up-to-date thinking go to Contents01 Why is NFC the next big thing? .......................................................... 302 Adjusting your website for tablet and smartphone viewing............... 703 How to do social media well ............................................................. 1304 The utility of apps ............................................................................ 18 3. 301 Why is NFC the next big thing?When you mention Near Field Communication (NFC) the average person glazes over with technical indifference, but this technology really could make a huge difference to ourlives over the course of the next few years. 4. 4 The (short) tech bit NFC, simply put, is the ability for a chip to communicate, over very short distances (up to 4cm), wirelessly with a receiver. This NFC chip could be in a multitude of items: SIM cards, credit cards, stickers, key fobs, or your phone. An NFC tag is an individual packet of data stored on the chip which can containPosted in TECHNOLOGYBy Dave Northdata with a variety of uses, each application can have its own or multiple tags.On 1st June 2011.This data is stored securely meaning it can be used for personal data like credit card information or PINs. How can NFC be used? The skys the limit. NFCs use is already widespread in things like key fobs to open doors, making the hardware readily available. However, the true potential of this technology seems to be expanding with the mass adoption of smartphones. The ability for apps on a device to read and write from NFC tags provides a way for the online and offline worlds to connect. 5. 5The first killer application for NFC is digital payments. Load all your debit andWhy is NFCcredit cards onto your phone; why not add your loyalty cards too? Paying at thethe next bigsupermarket will become as simple as tapping your phone against a scannerthing?and away you go. Googles implementation, Google Wallet, will provide targetedadverts and even vouchers you can use over NFC.NFC isnt limited to digital payments though, and more intelligent loyaltyschemes, tap transfer of data or contacts, a digital key for your car or just likingsomething by tapping it with your phone, are all applications that are likely tospring up over the coming months.There are obvious extensions forexisting social media apps: add a friend orfollow someone just by tapping your phonestogether; check-in to your local coffee shop;really, the applications are endless.The ability for apps to interact with their local environment means that hopefully weregoing to see some really time savers appear,many of which will try and guide customersthrough the full buying process and beyond. 6. 6Why arent we seeing this yet?The limiting factor for much of NFC is the speed of rollout. Barclaycard hasalready implemented the technology into its credit cards but the availabilityof scanners for payment is still patchy. Particularly when you try to move thistechnology to your mobile device youll find your choice is limited with only avery small number of smartphones containing an NFC chip.The support for this technology is already strong though; NFC payments aretried and tested and have been used in Japan for years. The software aspect alsoexists, with Android offering NFC from version 2.3. Apple are unlikely to missthe boat here either with the anticipated iPhone 5 likely to have an NFC chip included.The buzz around this technology means the hardware will become morecommonplace and this will increase consumer adoption, and by incentivising useNFC could be positioned as saving customers money.The key thing for NFC is the ability to link your virtual world to the real worldand Im sure the appetite for this from customers and businesses is going to be huge. 7. 702 Adjusting yourwebsite for tablet &amp;smartphone viewing 8. 8 Its been quite a while since the first tablet or mobile device appeared with the new functionality of being able to rotate, flipping your view seamlessly from portrait to landscape mode.Posted in TECHNOLOGYBy Matt French Its an amazingly useful feature, and one that surely caters for any website or appOn 31st May, but begs the question: how can we design to take full advantage of our new flexible canvas? Ive heard that you are supposed to view the tablet in portrait mode so it feels more like the proportions of a book or newspaper rather than a laptop, but this doesnt work for me. In my opinion it s personal preference how you choose to orientate your tablet or mobile phone. I use two devices: an iPad and an iPhone. With the iPad I find it more useful in landscape, but the iPhone (which feels like a smaller version of the iPad), I prefer to hold in portrait mode. The best way to take advantage of the flexible canvas is to build an app in which you can reconfigure the layout depending on orientation. Take the BBC news app for example. In landscape mode the news headlines appear on the left-hand side leaving a large viewing pane to the right for the article you are reading. Tilt your 9. 9device and the headlines shift to the top leaving a large viewing pane now at the Adjustingbottom. Notice that the size of the body text remains the same. your websitefor tablet &amp;But without going to the effort of designing bespoke mobile or tablet versions of smartphonewebsites what can we do to make the experience for users more pleasant? viewingText sizeThe most obvious thing to do is to enlarge the text size. Type can get pretty smallwhen viewed on a smartphone in portrait mode. Yes viewers can zoom in but Ithink its more helpful to try and make the text bigger to read at a glance. Oneof the main problems I see is cramming text into narrow columns, meaning itbecomes virtually illegible.Most websites are governed by a fixed width of about 960 pixels. If we enlargedthis width wed be out of the safe viewable area for many computer monitors. Ivenever been a fan of flexible or stretchy layouts because it goes against mytypographic principles I like to constrain the text by a character limit (52-78characters, including spaces) known as the measure, this enables readers toskip from line to line more easily. Phones and tablets, however, tend to benefitfrom a stretchy layout. 10. 10 Also tablet and smartphone users know how to scroll so try not to be tempted to cram too much above the fold and let the page breathe. Watch out for rollovers Be careful when using Flash On touchscreens, because you dont have a mouse pointer, rollovers dont Flash isnt supported on some devices work so make sure that any rollover so try and make sure there is a effects are not essential for fallback option. basic navigation. Make links more clickable and make buttons easier to press. It can be tricky using the touchscreen so larger custom dropdowns, form fields and larger buttons are more advantageous. 11. 11 Lose the third column Adjusting your website This is quite controversial as a third column containing contextual links is pretty for tablet &amp; much a standard convention with most websites these days. But, by removing it,smartphone you get much more screen real estate available for the meaty content theviewing challenge is to include the contextual stuff elsewhere, either through clever information architecture or by including it in the main body of the page. The main navigation One of the hardest things I find when using a mobile phone to search the internet is using the main navigation of many websites. Apart from having a mobile version of the website, probably the best thing to do is to restrict the main navigation to about 5 items, make it a lot bigger and avoid flyouts. Colour contrast Make sure there is adequate colour contrast. This should be checked on all websites anyway but be aware that with mobile phone and tablet devices many people keep brightness and contrast low to save battery. 12. HI! 13. 13 03 How to do social media well Iceland wants to be your friend is an object lesson in howto do social media well. I love this campaign and the more Ilook at the detail, care and craftmanship that has gone intoit, the better I think it is. 14. 14 So, before I say anything else, let me just give a big thumbs up to the clever folk at Takk Takk and the Icelandic Tourist Board. They have taken this quote from Hugh MacLeod to heart: Posted in TRAVELIf you talked to people the way By Laura Fletcher On 3rd June 2011. advertising talks to people theyd punch you in the face. And boy can these guys teach traditional advertising a thing or two about talking to people! For me there are five key elements in doing social media well and this campaign ( has achieved all of them. Personality and Charm The team behind this campaign has created a wonderful, whimsical and charming character for the small island in the middle of the North Atlantic 15. 15 Ocean. As an island talking to humans on its inter-nets it has a very clear and How to do stylised tone of voice, and is prone to the odd, enchanting misunderstanding. social media well Originality I dont think I have seen any other country or tourist board ever be brave enough to give their country a first person voice. The originality of this campaign is a big part of its charm. Commitment to interaction Iceland takes the time to respond to the humans who get in touch, this forms the vast majority of its activity it doesnt simply broadcast information about itself, it has a proper conversation. The team behind this also clearly takes a great deal of care over crafting Icelands replies. Takk Takk has managed to keep the tone of voice remarkably consistent, which is harder than it sounds. A widely dispersed campaign There are loads of ways to get in touch with Iceland on the internet now. Iceland wants to be your friend is the hub of the campaign but it has been widely 16. 16 dispersed across lots of social media platforms: Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter, Vimeo, Foursquare to name but a few. They therefore have a broad reach with what is a simple idea. They have also turned the recent volcano eruptions into another opportunity to talk to people. Surprise and delight Takk Takk has hidden lots of clever details and surprises around the campaign. If you want to see a good example of this just go to : (Right click and view source you will see what I mean!) 17. 17 Patience and persistence How to dosocial mediawell The campaign has recently reached a tipping point, although it has been going since 2009. The organisers havent given up or lost momentum but theyve kept on building on the core concept of developing Icelands personality and character, and talking directly to people. The key question is will this make people get in their silver flying machinesand visit the island? I can only speak for myself, but I am certainly a lot more aware of the reasons I should visit (there are lots) and I am certainly keen to do so. I am also a lot more forgiving of the volcanic eruptions, I know Iceland doesnt mean it and at least they are keeping us up-to-date! 18. 18 04The utility of apps 19. 19I bank with First Direct and like many of theirThe utility of Appscustomers Im evangelical about them, theircustomer service is second to none in the bankingsector. For instance, they answer the phone almost Posted in MOBILEimmediately, are always cheerful and efficient. By Jon Waring On 3rd May 2011.The printed material is simple and well executed with the distinctive use of blackand white typography maximum communication, minimum ornamentation.But, today Im making a mildly critical comparison between their website andiPhone app to make the case for design simplicity. 20. 20 The current First Direct website homepage (shown as of 28th April 2011): 21. 21 TypographicallyHierarchyThe utility of Apps Its very busy, not as considered as Theres a lot of information given the their printed material.same priority, I dont feel like Imbeing led through the page. MessagingInteraction design Is sell first, help second with mortgages, ISAs and whatnot taking It has not been designed for touch up a great deal of space.interaction, using my iPad my clumsyfingers frequently hit the wrong link. 22. 22 Heres the 3 stage login: Pop up window 1 after clicking link from homepage 23. 23 The utility of Apps Page 2 Page 3 24. 24 Now compare it to the simplicity of the iPhone App: 25. 25 I use the First Direct iPhone app more than the actual website: its quicker, easier The utility and much more satisfying. In fairness, this is true of most website vs app of Apps experiences the iPhone screen size and operating system (iOS) dictates a simplified user journey. My contention, however, is that apps are the inevitable conclusion of a desire for simplicity and focused utility. So, bearing this in mind, how could First Direct improve the homepage? I thought Id show you rather than write about it. 26. 26 27. 27 Not perfect, not tested and certainly not conclusive but, as a first stab at The utility including some of the lessons learned from their excellent app, Id argue its of Apps an improvement. Forgive me First Direct, I love you really and hopefully youll take this post in the spirit its intended: Help first, sell second. 3Sixty is a digital creative agency. 28. 28 We create digital assets that provide a strong commercial return for our clients and a useful and beautiful experience for their customers. 29. 29 Our services Digital strategy and planning Website design &amp; technical development Behavioural Economics Information architecture User experience research and design Mobile Touch screen design Social media Search - SEO, PPC Measurement and analytics 30. 32 3Sixty is a digital creative agency. Contact Chris Thurling +44 (0) 117 90 77 360 1st Floor, Clifton Heights, Triangle West, Bristol BS8 1EJ </p>


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