Top Next Big Design Blog Posts of 2014

We’ve published a lot of creative, inspiring, and thought-provoking posts this year on the Next Big Design Blog, so we wanted to take a moment to look back on the most popular posts of 2014. Here are the topics our readers enjoyed the most this year:

Why Your Brand Needs to Get Visual: Today in media, everywhere we look we are seeing a shift to visual – including photos, infographics, illustrations, slideshows, memes, videos, and any other imagery that can be engaged with and shared. With more images and fewer words, visual content is the perfect answer for our busy schedules and hyper-engaged lives. Businesses looking to make an impact in today’s world should embrace this shift and the advantage that visuals provide to be seen and heard — quickly, clearly, and powerfully. To read the full post, click here.

How to Create a Magnetic Brand: Marketing messages are coming at you everywhere you go. In fact, customers are bombarded with thousands of marketing images and messages every single day - more than 5,000 to be exact, according to researchers.  When you’re standing in line at the grocery store, when you’re driving down the street, when you’re watching TV and, whenever you’re online, someone is trying to sell you something. This leads to “communication fatigue”—meaning we are bombarded by so many messages that we end up ignoring more to keep our heads from exploding. So, what does this mean for your brand? It means crafting the best marketing campaign in the world may not cut it anymore, if consumers are not interested in what you have to say. To read the full post, click here.

29 Ways to Stay Creative: Creativity is something that many look beyond, but creativity is one of the greatest qualities we can be lucky enough to have, but many never allow their true creativity to be expressed. Our ability to express our deepest feelings is at the core of the importance of creativity. As humans we have a very strong need to express ourselves and we're happiest when other people understand what we are trying to get across to them. We can all benefit from a boost to our creative juices. Those who are truly creative don’t copy what others do; instead, they may use innovative ideas from others as a springboard to come up with a unique product for themselves. They tend to distance themselves from the competition rather than compete with them. If they see another company or person copying what they do, they create something even better. Put simply, they are able to leverage their creativity and innovative capabilities to attain success. To read the full post, click here.

How to Create a Memorable Design: Although it may not seem like it, what we experience and what we remember are in fact two very different things. Most product design strategy is directed toward experience, but cognitive scientists say that we should really focus on memory instead because our memories drive the majority of our decision-making. To read the full post, click here.

The Key Ingredients of a Comprehensive Brand Strategy: Did you know your business won’t succeed without an effective brand strategy? Brand strategy is the how, what, when, and to whom you communicate your product to the world. Having a clear brand strategy leads to stronger brand equity, or how people perceive your product, and how much they are willing to pay for it. To read the full post, click here.

5 Ways Creativity Creates Productivity: Today, business leaders are completely and utterly focused on productivity. Meanwhile, creativity is the spark of a new idea so incredible that it interrupts whatever you’re doing to get it onto paper. Creativity leads to productivity, if that workplace environment is developed and nurtured in a way that allows the two to peacefully co-exist. To read the full post, click here.

What Does Your Logo Say About Your Business?: A truly great company logo becomes synonymous with its identity. For instance, McDonald’s golden arches, Apple’s apple, Coca-Cola’s cursive typeface, Nike’s swoosh and all of those iconic brand images stuck in your head. But what does a logo say about your company? To read the full post, click here.

About the Author: Amanda Ciccatelli, Social Media Strategist of the Marketing Division at IIR USA, has a background in digital and print journalism, covering a variety of topics in business strategy, marketing, and technology. Amanda is the Editor at Large for several of IIR’s blogs including Next Big DesignCustomers 1stDigital Impact, STEAM Accelerator and ProjectWorld and World Congress for Business Analysts, and a regular contributor to Front End of Innovation and The Market Research Event,. She previously worked at Technology Marketing Corporation as a Web Editor where she covered breaking news and feature stories in the technology industry. She can be reached at aciccatelli@iirusa.com. Follow her at @AmandaCicc.

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