June 24, 2014

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Small Business Marketing Toolkit #1

Brand Promise. You need one.


“Great!” you say.


“What is that?”


Okay. Crafting your Brand Promise is a process. It begins with asking some questions.

Brand Promise Pyramid

Image courtesy: Scrapbook Marketing Minute


I began Howe Innovative Design to solve a problem. There simply weren’t affordable yet skilled web designer in my area. It was one or the other. My first client was a local non-profit. This opened the door to creating client solutions and developing what was to become my brand identity.

Let’s get started with your Brand Promise.

January 27, 2014

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Your Brand, Your Website

You have a great idea, product or service. You use the internet and love finding useful information through Google. You figure you need a website to promote your awesome idea or business.


Wanting a low cost alternative to your own website, perhaps to you turn to Yahoo, Blogspot, or Etsy.


There can be benefits to these low-cost sites. However, realize there are specific reasons why Yahoo, Blogspot and Esty don’t use their own free design services.

January 22, 2014

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Olympia – A Techies Trial

I packed a Penske with everything we owned and headed North. Relocating to Olympia, WA from Salt Lake City, Utah.


I noted a severe lack of quality web developers and web marketing in Thurston County. Seriously, it’s dismal. There are exactly 2 firms in town with portfolios worth a damn. Of those, neither perform content driven design or offer any content or substantive marketing services at all.


My ambition and gusto coupled with the proceeds of a house sale propelled me to talk with anyone and everyone in Olympia, Tumwater and Lacey, all adjacent cities, about any and all web related topics. I attended Social Media Club Meetings in Seattle and Portland and several other exciting new gathering emphasizing collectivism in technology.


My excitement grew, as did my newly designed website. At last, my years of experience, all those non-billable hours spent learning, studying, coding and mingling with anti-social webbies- I had arrived.

December 8, 2013

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Why I Don’t Unsubscribe

Because it saves me money.


I don’t open all those pesky e-mails from The Limited, Staples, Office Depot, Petsmart or Southwest Airlines. I only give them the e-mail address with a robust spam filter that I can only check from my desktop. I’m brand loyal but I draw the line at my phone.


Plus, Southwest Airlines basically blackmails me for discounts. If I don’t subscribe to those e-mails for a certain period of time I lose bonus points.


If it weren’t for the cheerfully colored planes and dirt cheap flights, I’d hate them. Although recent controversy involving peanuts has given me pause…


The Limited offers affordable woman’s professional attire well tailored to my body type. Throw in the 50% off coupons in my inbox and there’s no going back.

June 11, 2013

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Woman In Technology-Sausage Fest No More

Overwhelmed with men, yet thoroughly unmanly-technology is the best place for women, mothers, wives and teachers.


One of the many advantages of attending technology conferences as a woman; no lines at the bathroom. There’s more sausage than Oktoberfest in Frankfurt at any given technology event. As a woman, I’ve been snickered at when discussing new code I’m developing or a new framework I’m experimenting with. I comfort myself knowing many of these “men” have loving relationships only with two dimensional women of cyber porn and gaming, although saying so will not make you popular or superior.

June 3, 2013

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Website Trends: Retina Ready. Are You?

Is your website “retina ready?”

If the answers is “No,” or “What is retina ready?” We should talk.

At very least, you should read on.


Retina displays are essentially high definition (HD) on tablets, mobile phones and newer monitors. This means your less than one year old site, looks fuzzy and distorted to a good portion of your visitors. Browsers handle the increased resolution no problem. If your awesome one or two year old site isn’t retina ready, it will look fuzzy or distorted. Not sure what that means? Zoom in and look at your site at 200%. How’s it look, is it pixelated?

February 27, 2013

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Eulogy for the “One & Done”

Web design is dying.


Web development is gasping for air.


The days of one (wo)man shows of websites are gone.
Sure, there’s the *eh hem* “budget conscious” clients that want piecework for a song. Cheap, easy sites, usually in WordPress or Drupal that some intern or staff member can maintain with ease and a weak password. I’ve got these clients. They are some of my favorites.