It’s ugly so it doesn’t work.

The Thickness of Napkins

The Thickness of Napkins
“What does a napkin tell you about a restaurant? Quite a lot. A restauranteur friend told me about a survey that showed a massive correlation between category of napkin and customer satisfaction. That’s not to say you can hand out deliciously thick napkins in a shitty burger joint and immediately win customers over. It’s a cause and effect thing. The napkin represents a degree of care, preparation and devotion that goes above and beyond asking if they want fries with that.”

This brief, but poignant article by Des Traynor, COO at Intercom, reminded me of a lesson I learned in developing Lyrek CEMS for the Fashion & PR industries back in 2007.

I sat down during a training session with a woman that ran the PR for many industrious fashion designers and started walking her though the product, then called Reserve-U. Her response:

“It doesn’t work.”

I rebutted with confidence that the product had been thoroughly tested and I assured her there were no bugs in the system.

“You don’t understand,” she said. “It’s ugly, so it doesn’t work.”

Read the rest of the article on ERA404’s web site, here:

Read the rest of “The Thickness of Napkins” on Contrast:
(via @raf)

25 Tips for Optimizing a Blog’s Google Sitelinks

25 Tips for Optimizing a Blog’s Google Sitelinks

The following is an excerpt from a new Informational Resource I’ve posted on my company‘s web site:

What are Sitelinks?

The links shown below some of Google’s search results (1), called sitelinks (2), are meant to help users navigate sites. Google’s systems analyze the link structure of each site to find shortcuts that will save users time and allow them to quickly find the information they’re looking for.

Google only shows sitelinks for results when they think they’ll be useful to the user. If the structure of the site doesn’t allow their algorithms to find good sitelinks, or they don’t think that the sitelinks for the site are relevant for the user’s query, Google won’t show them. At the moment, sitelinks are automated, but there are best practices site owner’s can follow, however, to improve the quality of their sitelinks.

Read the rest of the article here…

The New era404 Stationery Goes to Press

This afternoon, I had the pleasure of taking a press run to PermaGraphics to watch the production of the new era404 stationery. Mike Caloni, the founder of the 13-year-old printing firm, led me on a tour through the facility, starting with the 70-year-old duplicator his mother bought to print wedding paperie at their kitchen table, and ending with the incredible Komori 6-Color press (you can see one in action here). Our business cards are a #130lb Cover, far too thick for the in-house Heidelberg presses. Operators Pete and Frank even let me nit-pick to get the spectrometer below .03 difference between the letterhead and buisness card stock (in fact, they seemed eerily content with my perfectionism).

PermaGraphics obviously has a passion for their craft—an increasingly rare trait in an industry squeezed financially by the eVendors—and provides more than competitive rates for the New York City metro area. I highly recommend the quality and professionalism of their services. And Mike is genuinely a great guy. More photos after the jump.

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