Should Designers Learn to Code or Should Coders Learn to Design?

By | web development, website design | No Comments

Some coders and designers might have little interest in learning a new discipline outside of the one on which they currently focus. Why should someone well trained in Adobe Illustrator worry about HTML and why would the champion of HTML worry about vector drawings in Illustrator? While it’s certainly true that coders and designers can work in tandem for things like software and Web development projects (and plenty of coders are designers and vice versa), it’s best if coders understand something about design and designers know something about code.

Why Coders Need Design Fundamentals

In plenty of situations, coders simply put together the code that brings a designer’s vision to life. Coders don’t always have the eye for design or maybe don’t feel comfortable making creative decisions. In order to break free from that mindset, it’s useful for coders to learn the fundamentals of design so that when they’re in a situation to make a creative decision, they can offer meaningful suggestions. When discussing design with those trained to design full time, a coder who understands the vernacular of design can have more productive conversations with designers, which can ultimately result in a better work product. An excellent resource for anyone interested in the fundamentals is “The Non Designer’s Design Guide” by Robin Williams.

Why Designers Need Coding Fundamentals

On the flip side of this, designers who understand coding and Web development fundamentals can have better dialogue with the code makers who bring their visions to life. Additionally, having a fuller understanding of what’s possible from a code writing perspective can widen a designer’s creative pallet. Only by understanding possibilities can a designer really reach their maximum creative potential. Graphic designers ready to step into the world of code and Web development can look to Kahn Academy’s online treasure-trove of resources to learn just about any type of code their heart desires.

The Double-Edged Sword of Data and Content Marketing

By | content marketing, marketing, Social Media, Utah | No Comments

In the abyss known as content marketing, creativity is usually deemed king; however, one vital and often overlooked quality of content marketing is data. Content without data is like an unmanned paper airplane; there’s no way to tell where it will go or how soon it will get there. However, data has the potential to turn content into pure gold — specifically if that content is targeting a particular location.

The data for content marketing in Utah might look drastically different than the data for marketing on the East Coast, which is exactly why you need to understand the different layers of data to turn your content into pure marketing gold.

Mastering the Art of Owned Analytics

Owned content has already been established as an integral aspect of marketing; however, how many times have you heard the phrase “owned analytics”? Owned analytics refers to data that is produced directly from a company or brand’s personal website and social media accounts. Owned data might include user reach, shares, engagement and so on. This type of data allows marketers to target their audiences more effectively — whether it’s an audience of outdoor enthusiasts in southern Utah or a group of engineers in Silicon Valley.

What Are the Benefits of Earned Content?

After completing the footwork of owned data, earned content comes into play. Earned content is content produced around a brand; for example, how a brand is trending on Twitter, how people are responding to content shared on Facebook and Instagram or how audiences are reacting to videos and blog posts. The benefit of earned content gives marketers a critical look at how targeted audiences are receiving content — which ultimately helps marketers tweak and fine-tune their content for optimal engagement.

Contextualize, Contextualize, Contextualize

The hardest part of using data in content marketing? Contextualizing it. Marketing to an audience in Salt Lake City, Utah will be substantially different than marketing to an audience in the Midwest. Fortunately, at Fusion 360 we’re pros at turning data into marketing gold — no matter where you’re at.

How to Respond After a Bad Ad: Navigating a PR Nightmare

By | public relations, Reputation Management | No Comments

What the public thinks about your brand defines you – for better or worse. Hiring a good advertising agency and producing successful ads sounds simple enough, but no matter how talented the agency, sometimes bad ads happen. How you respond when they do can make or break the future of your brand.


The key to good performance is good preparation. If you are an established Utah advertising agency or a Midwest startup, the principle is the same. Have a plan, and make sure every employee is aware of that plan.

While you can’t plan an exact response to every situation, you can have procedures in place for who will comment on behalf of the company, who will talk to the press, and who will say absolutely nothing. Help employees understand that if a bad ad happens, they can either help turn the situation in a positive direction or they can sink the entire ship.

Respond at the Right Time, in the Right Way

If a bad ad happens, you need to decide how to respond, and you need to decide quickly. Determine the authority of those who are upset. If you are an advertising agency in Utah and the only complaint you have received about an ad is from a man who lives across the street from the office, there probably isn’t a need to publicly respond. On the other hand, if millions of angry people are expressing their opinions on social media and national news outlets are reporting the story, you absolutely need to respond.

Remember the public is always right. Customer service is more important now than ever before. If the public thinks your ad is bad, then it is bad. Pull the ad and issue a sincere apology. Saying “no comment” might as well be commenting, “We’re in the wrong, and we don’t care.”

Replace Bad PR With Good PR

The best solution to bad PR is to simply do better. Adopt a Utah highway as an advertising agency or create a campaign for a local non-profit organization. Show the public that you are trying your best to serve the community, fix any problems, and give consumers the best products and services you can offer.

Think SEO Isn’t Important for Your Business? Think Again

By | Google, marketing, SEO, Utah SEO | No Comments

For companies from the Midwest to Utah with any measure of online presence, search engine optimization — also known as SEO — is a necessary part of digital marketing. Just as how businesses may purchase signs or billboards to help their business get noticed in real life, so too do businesses work hard to increase their presence in the digital sphere — and that’s where SEO comes in.

In the wide world of the Internet, search engines are working hard to identify, process and organize the information of billions of different Web pages, all at the same time. Now search engines are smart — but not that smart. In order to better understand what your website is trying to tell them, search engines need a little help.

SEO works by increasing that line of communication between your website and search engines, helping to propel your website to the forefront of relevant search results. Here’s why every business in Utah and elsewhere worth its salt needs to take the time to invest in SEO.

A Little Bit Goes a Long Way 

SEO offers great return on investment — better than that of an advertising campaign for Jell-O in Utah. By focusing on a few target keywords and integrating them into your content accordingly, your search rank can increase markedly — and once you’ve made it to the first page of search results, your conversion rates will increase exponentially.

SEO and Digital Marketing Go Together Like Peanut Butter & Jelly

Already have an online marketing presence, but don’t know how to go about integrating SEO into the mix? Don’t worry — SEO and digital marketing were practically made for each other. If you’re already producing content on a regular basis, you just need to integrate your target keywords and start building up an assortment of high-quality backlinks, and you’re already well on your way to SEO success.

If You Have a Website, You Need SEO

Think of SEO as a flyer for an upcoming event you’re holding in central Utah. After months of work and careful planning, the day of your big event has arrived — but nobody shows, because you didn’t put any effort into advertising. This is basically what happens when you spend the time and money to develop an awesome company website, but don’t invest any resources into SEO. Don’t let your website go to waste — invest in SEO and get the word out there.

SEO and Social Media are BFFs

Does your company have a strong social media presence? If so, you can use social media to your advantage for SEO, integrating target keywords as hashtags, linking back to posts on the website, and garnering more shares, likes and other kinds of engagement from target consumers. You might need an SEO professional in Utah to walk you through the process, but trust us on this one — SEO and social media would have totally been in each other’s Top 8 on MySpace.

SEO Builds Major Industry Cred 

Another bonus to SEO is that is it helps to build some serious industry cred. When your company appears at the top of the search results for your relevant keywords, it just screams “credibility.” And if your target audience in Utah believes you’re the best and brightest in the industry, they’ll be more likely to read and share your content around the Internet, further propelling you to the top — it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.

SEO Gets You the Most Bang for Your Buck 

Not only does SEO beat out paid search by a long shot in terms of overall conversion rate, the benefits of SEO last a lifetime. Effective SEO can bring in thousands, if not millions, of new potential customers, and the effects of a good SEO campaign will last far longer than other digital marketing endeavors. Think of SEO not as an expense, but as an investment — one that will keep you on top of the search results for a long time.

There are numerous other benefits to SEO, but these are the main incentives. Whether you’re running a startup business in Utah or a larger corporation on the East Coast, SEO is one thing you won’t regret investing in. Get started with an experienced SEO firm today, and you’ll be on the road to Internet fame & fortune.

How Important Is Establishing a Brand Voice?

By | content marketing, marketing agencies, public relations | No Comments

Keeping a consistent tone in your brand voice plays a huge part in how your customers will perceive your company. Big name companies such as Google, LinkedIn and Yamaha have really been amping up their game on how they use their voice — because they understand how important their brand voice is. Knowing your voice will help you craft your content, and content marketing companies in Utah, like Fusion 360, can help you with that craft.

Finding your voice isn’t easy; you have to consider if your company is looking for a funny tone, a serious tone or maybe something inspirational. Once your company has discovered what their tone is, that’s when the real work comes in. Changing your brand tone will mean some major overhauls in your writing styles, content and website.

Who Are You Speaking To?

Whatever you’re trying to market, whether it’s in Utah or around the globe, knowing your audience is going to help you build your voice. Are you trying to speak to teenagers or are you trying to get the attention of senior citizens? Whatever platform you decide to write with, you will want your company to be able to speak to your clients, and give them reassurance that your vision is what they want too. If you’re speaking very bluntly with humor, this probably wouldn’t be the right voice when speaking to senior citizens in Utah, instead try to make yourself sound professional and honest.

What Are You Trying to  Say?

Forbes writes, “Why is your message of broader significance, to the market in general and to your target customers in particular?” Basically, what is your business trying to accomplish, what is the main message? If you’re trying to set up a charity fund, you don’t want an angry tone, you want an understanding and open-minded tone. This is where your company will want to express what your business is all about, and how that connects your customers. Your hired content marketing company Fusion 360 in Utah, can help you with this and help you craft a connection.

How Are You Expressing It?

According to Forbes, there are multiple layers on how you will want to communicate: Your tone, your approach and your medium. Focusing on your medium can help your company when it comes to your content marketing strategy. Many sources will tell you to start a blog, or start an e-newsletter, but this may not be the right way to market to your audience. If you find that these content marketing strategies aren’t working, expand and explore video making or podcasting. Trying new social platforms, or ways of communicating to the client is a god way to find your customers here in Utah or around the world.

How Are You Saying It?

An author knows how to use their voice in their stories – with plot twists, character developments and the author’s descriptions.  Finding this voice will be imperative, because your company could have two writers working on the same article, but both will have very different voices. Think of what vocabulary you want to use, and how you want the tone of your pieces to sound. Using these in your content marketing  will help you reach your audience, and market what you want your customers to know about your company.

Before you start writing content, consult a content marketing company like Fusion 360. We can help you get the right voice for your brand, and once you have this solved, this will help you gather the right audience to your company whether it’s in Utah or around the world.



Building a Website? Let’s Break It Down First

By | Design, web development, website design | No Comments

Building a website can be pretty easy with one of those various turn-key site design companies. Trouble is, by using those you don’t get the flair you need to stand out, the customization you need to get customers exactly what they need and worst of all, you don’t get to work with us on a web development project. Instead of going with the minimum viable options, here’s what happens when you have the pros on your side. 

Site Map

It all starts here. This is the blueprint for your web development project. If it were a car, this would be the engineering diagram you need before you get started. A good site map will tell you exactly where all of your various web pages will be, how they interact, and how you can map a customer journey from the home page to product or service research to conversion.


Now that you know where everything will go, you can start building wireframes for various page types. These are sort of like the frame of a car. Your company may need a number of different templates because a blog article won’t use the same template as the home page or a page that lists a matrix of product features.

Mood Boards

As you move forward with web development, a moodboard will help you outline what the site will look like visually and even how it functions. Using our car analogy, it’s a book full of paint jobs and feature sets. A mood board might be composed of a  big mess of ideas, thoughts, colors, other websites, feelings or whatever. The idea behind a mood board is to identify what sort of mood your site should have and it’s a direct reflection of your brand identity. Do you want to have a sterile super-businessy site? Maybe something flashy and modern? The choice should be whatever best reflects your brand identity and will serve your customers well.

Design Comps

Once you have an idea of how you want to site to feel, designers will start building a vision of how your pages should look. They may send you a few ideas to pick from and often you’ll have the opportunity to provide your feedback and get your site feeling exactly how you think it should.

Content Creation

This is often done in parallel with design, but content creation includes the actual writing of the web pages, and filling the pages with various content you need, whether it’s composed of videos, infographics, or what have you. Combined with the design, your car now has a paint job and all the little accents. Isn’t web development fun?

Final Layout

Once content and design are finalized, the two will be merged together into your gorgeous new site and our web development project is complete. At this point, you can drive your new site off the lot and into the information superhighway.

How Does Google Determine Your Business’s Local Ranking?

By | Google, SEO, Utah SEO | No Comments

With the ongoing rise of smartphones among the American public, it’s no wonder local SEO has become increasingly important to both small businesses and larger regional companies. Whether you’re a new independent coffee shop in Utah or a well-established local retailer, local search rankings are essential for your business. But how does Google decide how highly your business ranks in local search?

Rather than link-building efforts, the main components of a high-ranking local search are consistent business citations, local reviews and Google My Business factors.

For local SEO, consistent NAP citations are a huge determinant of your local search ranking. This means the name of your business, your location in Utah, phone number and hours of operation need to be consistent and correct across platforms — from your company website to listings on Yelp, Zomato and Facebook. This information also needs to be included on your Google My Business page, in addition to an accurate description of your company and an array of high-quality photos.

Local reviews are the last main component of Google local search rankings. Ideally, you want a significant amount of positive Google reviews, Yelp reviews and more. For maximum results, include instructions on how to leave a review on your company website.

In addition to the above factors, Google determines your local business ranking based on how relevant, geographically close and prominent your business is. How well does your local listing match what consumers are searching for? If the consumer is searching from Salt Lake City, Utah, how close is your business to that potential consumer’s location? How well known is your business? Naturally, the better your business satisfies these factors, the higher you will rank in that particular consumer’s local search results.

While Google’s local search factors are changing all the time, the general purpose remains the same. People want to see results that are relevant to their wants and needs. If your business successfully satisfies local consumer needs, your SEO rankings will follow accordingly.

How Facebook Marketed “Straight Outta Compton” for Crossover Success

By | content marketing, Utah | No Comments

The power of content marketing has never been stronger nor more successful than in the case of Universal’s decision to create customized racial marketing for the film “Straight Outta Compton.” The film tells the story of the rise of the hip-hop group N.W.A. — a group that most white Americans were unfamiliar with. Facebook successfully helped Universal Pictures create custom advertising contingent upon race — whether in Utah or on the West Coast — that proved to be surprisingly successful.

“Straight Outta Compton” Received Wide Crossover Appeal

Universal Pictures’ EVP of digital marketing, Doug Neil, had an initial hunch that the film would be popular with African American audiences; however, he was surprised to discover that “Straight Outta Compton” also received a wide crossover appeal. The film grossed over $160 million at the U.S. box office; a feat that Neil credited in part to Facebook’s specialized content marketing. By creating custom trailers for different demographics of the population — whether in Salt Lake City, Utah or on the East Coast — the film reached a broader audience and experienced a higher success rate at the box office.

Ice Cube, Dr. Dre and N.W.A. Were All Marketed Differently

Part of the marketing challenge that the movie faced was the fact that although many non-African Americans and non-Hispanics knew what N.W.A. was, or knew that Ice Cube and Dr. Dre actually made music, most of this general population identified Ice Cube only as an actor and Dr. Dre as the name behind the unnecessarily expensive line of Beats headphones. The solution to this dilemma was easily solved: the movie was marketed to white audiences on Facebook as a tale of the advancement of Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, as opposed to a story about N.W.A. The trailer marketed to African Americans was much different, and capitalized on the population’s familiarity with N.W.A.

The bottom line? Content marketing works, especially when attempting to target a particular demographic — whether in small-town Utah or a large East Coast city. The marketing experiment of “Straight Outta Compton” has paved the way for future successes in the realm of content marketing to different audiences.

The Key Components of Mobile SEO

By | SEO, Utah, Utah SEO | No Comments

Google is always working to improve its user search experience — and the company’s latest target is mobile. Google has already made the pushed for app indexing, making it easier for Google users to find a company’s app among their desired search results. Now with SEO incorporating mobile more than ever, here are a few things businesses in Utah and elsewhere need to know about mobile SEO.

Focus on Rankings

Mobile SEO and traditional desktop SEO really aren’t really that different, but it’s important that businesses maintain a focus on rankings for core keywords. Mobile search is growing significantly faster than traditional search; if your company website isn’t mobile-friendly, it’s unlikely your site will rank at the top of the search rankings for your target keywords. As you can see, having a mobile-friendly website is easily the most important component of good mobile SEO.

Fix Any Mobile Errors

Mobile search experts in Utah and elsewhere have looked at various different website designs, from websites with a separate mobile design to sites with multi-modal desktop and mobile designs. According to the research, there isn’t a significant difference between websites that use mobile-specific designs and those that don’t — instead, webmasters should focus on fixing any errors. This will help increase traffic to your website, as the mobile user will feel more comfortable using it.

Get an App

App Store Optimization is another key component of mobile SEO. Making your app stand out in the App Store will not only help your SEO, but boost your app indexing as well. App indexing is basically like SEO for your app content; keeping all pages of the app indexed and incorporating relevant keywords will help increase downloads of your app.


Google has also recently incorporated AMPs (accelerated mobile pages). AMPs are pages that show up on the right side of a Google search, usually with a link to Wikipedia. On your mobile, AMPs are often at the top of search results. Unfortunately for companies in Utah and elsewhere, Google AMPs are currently for publishers only.

Mobile is the new frontier for companies everywhere — with these four key components, anyone can become a mobile SEO professional.

Fusion 360: Masters of Web Design

By | web development, website design | No Comments

Here at Fusion 360, we do website design better than Martha Stewart does tax evasion. Here are some of the various awards and accolades we’ve won over the years for our sleek and classy Web design.

The Webby Awards – 1x Winner

One of the oldest and most prestigious awards for Internet excellence, since 1996 the annual Webby Awards have honored the best and brightest in the world of digital marketing and website design. Presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences, the Webby Awards cover everything from social media and video content to outstanding website design.

To win such an award is considered “the Internet’s highest honor,” and Fusion 360 is proud to have been a recipient.

The Davey Awards – 3x Winner

The Davey Awards are designed for the small advertising agencies with big ideas. Offering awards for all kinds of creative content from both digital agencies and ones that work in traditional print, the Davey Awards honor those that take an exceptionally creative approach to the challenges marketing and design companies face everyday.

With three different wins for our characteristically creative, user-friendly website design, Fusion 360 stands up tall against the big ad agencies — just like how David stood up against Goliath.

The W3 Awards – 1x Winner

Presented by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, the W3 Awards honor everything in creative excellence on the World Wide Web. The W3 Awards honor advertising agencies big and small — and everyone in between. With awards in marketing programs, videos, website design, mobile features and social media, the W3 Awards truly feature all of the Internet’s best content.

As a one-time winner of the W3 Award for our outstanding website design, Fusion 360 joins the ranks of the Internet’s best and brightest. When it comes to Web design, why would you go with anyone else?

Creative Excellence, Quantified

As one of Utah’s top advertising agencies, our clients don’t just trust we’ll deliver the best results — they count on it. While our current stash of awards may be nice and shiny, we’re always looking to bring home as many as we can.

For the agency of the future with the awards to back it up, count on Fusion 360 to bring you the best website design money can buy. We guarantee it.