iStrategyBlabs

Our Facebook Demographics Post Goes Viral with a 250K Visits to ISL

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On January 15th, we posted an update to our ongoing series on Facebook Demographics: “3 Million Teens Leave Facebook in 3 Years: The 2014 Facebook Demographic Report”.  Over the course of the next 24 hours the world took notice of our little blog post, and we’re still seeing it ripple through the interwebs (and are still fielding plenty of queries from media outlets from all over the world) and drove nearly 250,000 visitors to this lovely little blog.

The post went live at 10:30 am — By 4pm we cracked Reddit’s top 10, with 1700+ comments, after skyrocketing to the top of ‘/technology’.

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Other sites quickly picked up the story, and the blog post continued to catch fire.  Here is a quick look at some of the social interactions individual media outlets hosted:

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Feature on WSJ:

Feature on CNBC:

Feature on Marketplace Tech Report:

Below are the other media sources that wrote about our blog post.  Perhaps our favorite, is Seeking Alpha’s take on Facebook’s recent stock performance:

While shares have received a boost from recent upgrades as of late, Facebook has been held in check thanks in large part to a report from iStrategyLabs, a digital strategy and marketing firm.

 

To check out the articles, just click the logo.

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Mobile Future’s 2013 Mobile Year in Review Video

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It’s our favorite time of year – when all of the crazy facts from the world’s internet use come alive in infographics and clever videos to show us how much time we spent online. Check out our own edition to 2013′s recaps below with the annual Mobile Year in Review 2013 for Mobile Future on the biggest trends in mobile in 2013. If you’re left wanting more, you can watch the Mobile Year in Review 2010, 2011 and 2012 too!

Oh and why wouldn’t we spend 4,500,000,000 hours on Spotify? And really, what did that Fox say? We love recap season!

Behind The Scenes: Natural Markets Food Group Web and Social Strategy

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In 2013, Natural Markets Food Group (NMFG) expanded their flagship restaurant and market concepts — Richtree Natural Market Restaurants and Mrs. Green’s Natural Market — across the US and Canada, and tapped iStrategyLabs to lead comprehensive website redesign and development, and social media strategy.

Before we started, Richtree and Mrs. Green’s had been operating independently, and NMFG was in the process of integrating them into a cohesive brand family. We were challenged to work within creative concepts that both maintained the companies’ unique identities and character, and refreshed them to reintroduce to new customers.

To meet the core needs of the project, we focused on three central objectives that would serve as a foundation to our approach.

1) Re-introduce a new, cohesive and unique brand identity. We needed to stay true to the companies’ history and core attributes, illuminate the best aspects of the brands’ character, and present a new identity that resonated with both long-time customers and new shoppers alike.

To accomplish the task, we knew we needed to make good food the star of the show. Beautiful photography of organic and all-natural foods are used front-and-center in our foundational design approach, complimented by supporting design elements of fresh colors and artisanal textures to provide a cohesive design concept.

From there, we were able to use the design framework to create a flexible, unique approach that tailors the core visual concepts to the individual brands. The result is a complimentary design approach that overlaps visually while maintaining a unique and independent visual character.

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2) Create a customer-centered web experience. The heart of this project required us to reflect, compliment, and translate the in-store customer experience to the web. To do that effectively, what customers need to do first and foremost is experience the store in person — which means finding store locations and information, food options, and even complete online ordering in a simple, easy process.

To tailor the web experience for what customers need most, we focused on a few key elements. First, store information and locations are super-easy to find, making it as easy as possible to take the first step in experiencing these unique food markets yourself.

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Second, an independent online ordering system was a top priority feature that informed our central design approach. While the integrations between platforms are simple, we designed them to result in a seamless experience from the customer’s perspective.

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Third, the websites prominently feature the essential aspects of a good customer experience — like in-store events, promotions and specials, recipes, and more. These aspects of the customer experience are important to customers who care deeply about the foods they eat, while driving in-store visits.

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Fully responsive website designs help to ensure that customers can find what they’re looking for easily from any device, from the comfort of home or on the go at one of the many store locations.

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3) Bring it all to life with character.  Our design approach needed  to make Natural Markets Food Group  stand out from the crowd among other organic and natural food markets.

To do that, we used the latest, most innovative interaction design concepts, grounded by a foundation of arresting, bold imagery. The result is a flexible design framework that puts core visual elements in the spotlight — with just the right touch of motion and interactivity.

On the Richtree Natural Market Restaurants website, we use a fun set of animation designs that highlight individual dishes from each of their unique eateries, and reflect the personality of the store.

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For Mrs. Green’s Natural Market, bold imagery is complimented with full-screen parallax animation that highlights their core values around good health and good food.

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And on the Natural Markets Food Group website, we used a unique slideshow format that combines bold use of color, imagery, and messaging to communicate the core values of the company and reveal what those values mean in practice.

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Finally, we made it all social. In the design process, we accounted for how each of the concepts would translate into social media — and how social would integrate back into the websites.

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The ultimate result is a visually consistent network of digital marketing channels, customized to the personality of each market, with social media content that feeds back to the websites in a meaningful way.

On completion of our initial project phase, iStrategyLabs has remained on board as an NMFG partner, for ongoing website design and development, and as their social media agency of record. It’s been our pleasure to work with a company so committed to an innovative customer experience that promises good food as part of a healthy lifestyle.

Whoa! PiePal Lets You Order Dominos Pizza with the Push of a Button

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Update: Piepal is buzzing! See the coverage on NBC, NPR x 2, CNET, FoxNews and more.

After building a series of Social Machines over the past few years (from unlocking GE fridges with Foursquare check-ins to weaponizing Twitter with a paintball gun, then destroying a bar with an internet connected baseball launcher) — we decided to take on a new challenge:

We handcrafted a RaspberryPi device that orders Dominos Pizza with the push of a button.

World, meet the PiePal, officially the easiest and fastest way to order a pizza. Sign Up to be a Beta Taster HERE.


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The physical construction of the PiePal was designed using SketchUp and printed out using PLA on a MakerBot Replicator 2.

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The internals are powered by a Raspberry Pi (of course!) & Arduino combination, allowing for finite control of the LEDs mounted internally and a fully realized user interface.

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Like many of iSL’s Social Machines, the PiePal is powered completely by JavaScript, using  Node.js. Some tricky reverse-engineering allowed us to set up an API wrapper around Dominos’ amazing online ordering system, which handles everything from finding the closest store to tracking the status of each order.

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Finally, we leveraged Google’s Coder library for the Raspberry Pi to create an intuitive setup experience that allows users to connect their wifi networks, Dominos accounts, and favorite pizzas for one-touch ordering.

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Hungry yet?  Want one for yourself?  While we’re still tinkering away, you may want a shot at being one of our elite Beta-Tasters… Check out piepal.me !

CourtPlay’s Brand and Digital Platform Launch

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CourtPlay, the brainchild of two die-hard tennis enthusiasts and professional coaches, came to iStrategyLabs with a clear mission: streamline the scheduling process between tennis coaches and players, allowing coaches to spend less time booking lessons and more time giving them.

iStrategyLabs took this concept and, with the CourtPlay team, built a brand and web application that gives coaches the ability to market themselves, eases the administrative responsibilities of coaching, eliminates the inefficiencies of their current scheduling process, and gives them maximum earning potential. Players now have all the necessary tools to sign up for lessons, find players at their skill level, and locate courts in their neighborhood.

The first step was to develop a killer brand for CourtPlay. Inspired by the sport of tennis and the possibilities CourtPlay.com held for creating a new sense of ease for tennis coaches and players alike, iSL Creative Director, Zach Goodwin created a striking logo for the new company. He explains:

The CourtPlay identity, typeset in Klavika, needed to feel like it straddled the line between a sports and lifestyle brand. The simple, modern, Nike-esque boldness of Klavika helped achieve that balance. The vertical stroke dividing the two words was intended to suggest the net of a tennis court, while also providing a needed jolt of contrasting color.

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Next, iStrategyLabs worked with the CourtPlay team to develop core values for their brand. Given the company’s early stage, iStrategylabs found it pivotal to establish their internal compass – the values that would eventually drive our work with CourtPlay and their functionality as a business. In our discovery process we worked closely with the CourtPlay team to deeply understand both their team and their brand in order to establish the following values:

Be Authentic – Be Simple – Inspire Action
Share Knowledge – Be Essential

ISL started the web design process by performing a technical assessment of CourtPlay’s existing platform. We needed to create a sophisticated application that included a booking system with a credit card-driven point of sale, a messaging system for players and coaches to interact, and profile creation with location-based searching. On top of all of that the new platform had to be visually striking, extremely intuitive and easy-to-use.

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The result is a clean and beautiful web platform that allows coaches to focus their time on what they do best, coaching. While CourtPlay is an effort to make the lives of tennis coaches easier, it is also an endeavor that caters specifically to tennis players, allowing them to connect to coaches, players, and tennis facilities. In the end, everybody—tennis coaches, players, and clubs—wins. And really, that was the goal of CourtPlay all along, create an innovative way to bring together the greater tennis community.

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Start playing now! Sign up today at http://CourtPlay.com.