The Studio 4 Blog
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Blog Archives

Has Google sparked a trend which spells the end for left hand navigation?

It may seem like a trivial change to some, but the recent update to Google’s navigation bar has, for many, signalled the end of an era when it comes to web design.

The acclaimed search engine has unveiled a subtle upgrade to it’s navigation in recent weeks – as opposed to being displayed on the left of the page, navigation now takes pride of place at the top and centre. Being a big name when it comes to the web, this may well set a trend for web developers to take note of. The reasons behind the change have not been officially cited, but we at The Studio 4 have our own theories.

Left hand navigation used to be accepted as the standard, mainly due to the way we tend to read and take in information (ie: In western cultures, from left to right). Not only this, but it provided … [Read More]

Facebook – is it worth paying for popularity?

There’s no denying that Facebook holds a distinct presence in social networking, which is more than likely due to it’s constant reinvention and steady stream of new features. These new features serve a purpose. They help keep it fresh, newsworthy and at the forefront of our minds – which is exactly what a social networking site should strive to be.

But with constant change also comes constant upheaval (and occasional backlash). The 2011 introduction of the timeline, for example, was the cause of many a disgruntled outburst from dis-satisfied users who immediately missed the familiarity and comfort of the tried and true, old-school “wall”. Outraged that a free service had changed without consulting them first, presumably.

Since founding the site in 2004, Zuckerberg and his team have reportedly built up it’s worth to over $1 billion, and their increasing efforts to monetise have become less and less subtle. In … [Read More]

Pinning your hopes on the next big thing

I met a futurologist once who was deeply embarrassed about his job title, but provided a fascinating hour-long chat on trend-spotting.

He said identifying the next big thing was as much down to probability and predictability than a sixth sense. You look at current trends and how they are evolving for an insight into what might happen next.

I likened his role to BBC’s Tomorrow’s World programme, which served up a tantalising glimpse into the future that in hindsight was not always very accurate. But he shook his head and claimed to be far more conservative in his predictions than the BBC show ever was.

I was reminded of that encounter during the last few weeks as I took a look around Pinterest.

It is relatively new on my social media radar, but the site is actually two years old. Not exactly the new kid on the social media … [Read More]

Don’t go changing…three words that don’t apply online

Don’t go changing. The first three words of a famous song might provide sound advice in matters of the heart, but they make absolutely no sense at all when it comes to business.

And it is certainly true when it comes to doing business online. Standing still online is never an option.

Change is good. Change is what we should all embrace.

Yes, I know, that’s all well and good in theory but when it comes to practice we all have a certain amount of fear and loathing when it comes to change.

If we encounter something new when we ae expecting the familiar, our first impressions are not always positive. In fact, they can be downright hostile.

That is just as true online, witness the fall-out from any new developments and announcements from our favourite search engines or social networking sites. Twitter’s recent announcement on the “open exchange of [Read More]

Do you like your customers?

The customer is always right. But do you have to like them too?

Social networking has changed the way many firms handle customer service. And those same social networking sites have given other firms the type of PR headaches they have spent years studiously trying to avoid.

Learning how to make best use of social networking sites is vitally important these days. A growing number of companies are taken a carefully considered and measured approach to using social media channels to interact with their customers…and even to like them.

Customer engagement has never been so easy...or so immediate

These companies are actively engaging in a very public conversation with people who buy their products and services, causing a mini revolution in terms of traditional customer service.

Social networking is revolutionising customer service. There are more and more examples of companies using Twitter to deal with individual customer complaints and get … [Read More]