Keeping Track of Potential Clients

by Jonathan Longnecker in Business

If you're a small to medium sized web studio chances are you don't have a dedicated sales person. That's right, you get to do sales right along with taxes, accounting, client management, product managing - you get the idea. Oh, yeah and you have to actually do all the work and manage to get the site launched, too! No biggie.

One thing that we've often struggled with is that while your busy, you're not focused on getting new clients. But when you finish that massive job and there's nothing to work on - then you're like “Oh crap!” So here's two simple things to keep this from happening:

1. Don't stop looking for new clients, even if you're balls to the walls busy.

I know, your brain just doesn't want to deal with them. But jobs take a while to close. If you're not constantly talking to people you're going to have a lull in business. Maybe they won't even be ready until you're done with your current workload. You never know who's actually going to sign so don't count on anybody's word till they've signed a contract and given you a deposit.

Often times we don't even put a full quote together, just a rough idea to see if they're really interested. And if you end up taking on too much, you can always get some contractors to help out.

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Cat Thief

by Nate Croft in Sketches

So we've got this cat. His name is Biscuit. And we've discovered he has a penchant for thievery.

His frequent target? The Apple TV remote.

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The World Needs Your Side Projects

by Nate Croft in Business

Many of us have side projects. You know, that thing you work on when your “work” is done for the day. We have them too. They are a great way to play with something new or build that cool idea thats been bouncing around your head. They can even be your masterplan to escape the clutches of that boring life you seem to be stuck in.

We are currently working on one now, it's called Kicktastic. We thought it would be a good opportunity to turn our experience running a successful business into a product to help other businesses grow into bigger markets and pick up better clients. And it will be. It's coming along nicely and will be out sooner than we are ready for it to be, to be perfectly transparent.

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Tron Dubstep Light Dance

by Jonathan Longnecker in Personal

Holy Smokes, you should watch this right now. Mixing up Tron, Dubstep, illuminated dancing and some genius coreography…it's just awesome. Checkout the thought and planning that must have gone into the jump cuts and part in the middle where they look like they're floating. So very cool.

via The Kids Should See This →

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CSS Faux Browser Style on Your Images

by Jonathan Longnecker in Design, Tutorials

Faux Browser CSS

While working on the new 47m site we decided that we wanted our portfolio images to look like they were in a browser. Easy enough, right? But I didn't want to save out every image with some fake browser thing at the top. That would be a huge pain if we ever wanted to change the style in the future. CSS to the rescue!

Let's start with your markup:

<div class="faux-browser">
   <img src="/images/image.jpg" />

I've opted for a pretty simple browser design, but you could totally get crazy with url fields, back/forward buttons. That would probably require an image, though and I was trying to avoid that. To get the browser are at the top we need the containing div to use the :before CSS selector.

Then add some CSS:

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Tumult Hype: An Easier Way to Deal with CSS3 Animations

by Jonathan Longnecker in Design


Do webkit transforms make your head spin? Wish that cool thing you just did in CSS3 actually worked in more than 2 browsers? Hype to the rescue! It slaps a GUI on what you want to do and spits out CSS and Javascript code for those browsers that aren't in the cool club yet. Did we mention it supports mobile browsers, too?

Hype looks very promising!

Go check it out

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Redesigning the FortySeven Media Site - Part Uno

by Jonathan Longnecker in Design, Business, ExpressionEngine

FortySeven Media New 2012

Note - I was going to have this all be one article, but it was too big and I don't want to bore you. So! Part Uno will focus on the design and stragegy while Part Dos will focus on the dirty technical details - from HTML5 & CSS3 to Responsive layouts and ExpressionEngine programming. Part Uno begins now:

Have you ever climbed to the top of a mountain, cooked a whole pound of bacon, ate it, hiked back down and built a mansion with your bare hands? That's what it felt like redesigning the FortySeven Media site.

Version 1 of was super gray and boring (seriously, it was gray). We were afraid to be ourselves and thought that in order to make it as a design studio we needed to be stuffy, businessy and impersonal.

FortySeven Media 2007
2007 - So much grey. Why oh why?

Next year we sat down and decided that if we were going to have our own company we should darn well act like it. With version 2 we overhauled the identity, made snarky pages like “Don't Hire Us,” created a blog and before we knew it, we were getting business from all over the place.

FortySeven Media 2008
2008 - The retro was strong with this one.

We had stumbled onto something, and quite frankly re-designing that kind of success is scary, especially when it provides for your family. The Lizard Brain was in full effect. We got talked about quite a bit when we launched the old site and we didn't want miss that magic this time around. Every time I sat down to work on it I just got overwhelmed. Could we make something nearly as iconic as the first go around? Turns out it didn't matter, because after waiting 4 years we were becoming obsolete. Don't get me wrong, the business was doing better than ever, but the jobs coming through the contact form were less interesting than they were a few years ago.

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FortySeven Media is Now Part of the Fusion Ad Network!

by Jonathan Longnecker in Business

Fusion Ads
The MIghty Fusion Logo

We're very excited to announce today that we're becoming part of the Fusion Ads Network! So many of our heroes are part of this network that it would be foolish to start trying to name one or two. Seriously, just go check out the list. To say we're humbled and honored is an understatement.

We love the ethos behind Fusion - that only ad per page is allowed and that they encourage you to make it fit the style of your site. Plus the products and services they're showing are razor focused towards you guys. Ads that are actually useful! Imagine that.

So, hey! If you see something over there that catches your eye it's ok to click. It helps us keep writing more posts, tutorials and deep (sometimes) thoughts. Thanks for reading!

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Ok Go Needing/Getting Video Insanity

by Jonathan Longnecker in Music, Personal

I didn't think Ok Go's videos could get any crazier, but good grief. Watch this thing. How long did this take to setup? They basically drive by hundreds of chimes, guitars, pianos and makeshift drums banging on them to make music. It's rad.

You silly, nutty ok going guys. Just keep on blowing our minds with your video awesomeness.

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Dogs Love Bow Ties!

by Nate Croft in Sketches

Sometimes you just have to draw a dog wearing a bowtie. It was a good excuse to set up mydrawing tablet a bit better as I'm still new to this whole pen table thing.

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Pears - Common Patterns of Markup & Style

by Jonathan Longnecker in Design

They're not juicy fruit, but they're still pretty cool.

Pears is a great idea from the Simplebits and Dribbble mastermind Dan Cedarholm - Create common UI patterns with the HTML and corresponding CSS for basic styling for a quick reference too. I think we all do this to an extent with snippets in our code editors, but this goes a bit further “pearing” them together (see what I did there?).

Even more interesting, it's also an open source Wordpress theme so you can use the framework to make your own pears.

Go check it out!

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by Nate Croft in Sketches

In an effort to have a little more fun with the blog, we will be adding our silly sketches for your enjoyment. Let's get this silliness kicked off!

Sony Walkman


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A New Site Needs New Pictures, Right?

by Nate Croft in Personal

When you build a new website, it's best to have a look at your old content and see what you could do better. One of those areas for us was pictures. We built the old site longe before I had a clue about photography so we thought we'd take some shiny new photos that really reflected our personalities. Here's what we have to show for it. Our families will surely be proud.

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We’re Doing A Kicktastic Workshop at Converge SE 2012

by Jonathan Longnecker in Design

Converge SE 2012

Those ConvergeSE guys have great timing! Right on the heels of our brand new site they've launched the conference site. Besides the awesome scrolling design and robotic battle dinosaurs (scroll down and see what happens to him!) the conference itself looks amazing.

Nate and I will be doing a workshop based on the Kicktastic project we're working on, so if you want to find out our secrets in person, register on February 16th. We'll try not to ruin the otherwise great list of speakers.

ConvergeSE is April 27-28 2012 in Columbia, SC.

Go check it out!

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