Christine Yuan
14 Nov

Meet Christine: BWD’s Very First Growth Hacking Intern!

Christine YuanWe are truly happy to welcome Christine Yuan of Barnard College at Columbia University to the BWD family as our very first intern! She's been growth hacking with us since September of this year, and today we sat down for a few quick, fun questions! -- Lara Chelak, Founder

Q: What fascinates you the most about working with small businesses and start-ups?

Answer: The movers, shakers, thinkers, and makers behind the small businesses and start-ups who work with BWD teach me so much about what it means to "do what you love, so you never have to work a day in your life." There's a transparency with small companies that makes it easy to see their founders' simple ambition and powerful tenacity. The abundant courage it takes to write a brand statement and commit to a website domain for your brainchild is inspiring.

Q: Why do you find digital marketing important?

Answer: Digital growth seems to be a positive feedback loop. A great company with a useful, interesting product will need a great website to promote its brand and its cause. When people read a brand statement that excites them, they will naturally "like," "favorite," and "follow" the page to learn more. Digital marketing is just the conduit that keeps people connected to other like-minded people.

Q: Tell us a little bit about your academic studies and background.

Answer:I was born inquisitive--growing up in New York City simply fueled the rate at which I asked questions. I'm an Economics-Mathematics major, Philosophy minor at Barnard College, so I ask questions about what's fair in the world and answer with graphs and equations. My areas of interest are Labor Economics and Behavioral Economics because I wonder why we do the things we do. Aside from my academic interests, I've been exposed to various corners of the technological world: I've been blogging since I created my first Xanga in 2005 and dabbling with audiovisual equipment in the back of event spaces since 2010. I've interned in the technology department at AllianceBernstein, but interning with BWD is my first foray into helping provide digital solutions for client services goals.

Q: What role do your studies play in the work place as an intern, and how have your studies helped you adapt to business situations in unique ways?

Answer: It's difficult to balance my responsibilities as a student and intern, but I like how all my experiences make me who I am. My multidisciplinary studies seem to keep me open-minded. My background in economics and philosophy motivates problem-solving while my training in mathematics helps me understand solutions structurally. Most importantly, my rigorous schedule continually challenges me to work intelligently and efficiently. I've met amazing people, in and out of school, who have taught me about all sorts of things (from how to solder to how to think about intergenerational justice), and  I don't think I would have had the opportunities if I hadn't sought a breadth of interests. All the behind-the-scenes development I learn about from interning with BWD add to my growing knowledge about how the world works.
22 Sep

What Facebook’s New Timeline & Open Graph Beta Means for your Brand

[caption id="attachment_638" align="alignright" width="300"] Credit: Facebook[/caption] Today at Facebook's annual f8 conference, the social network giant announced game-changing modifications to the ways in which Facebook user data is served up and curated. "Timeline" is a total re-approach to the profile while the new beta version of Facebook's Open Graph protocol provides for social application development never before seen on such a massive level. Timeline offers users the ability to curate their life's data all in a thoroughly manageably chronology, including simple inclusion and exclusion settings in addition to a beautiful new presentation. Facebook's Open Graph Beta will provide some fascinating new ways for users to connect with the brands they know and trust, offering great new opportunities for future digital commerce.

Open Graph Beta: An Exciting New Opportunity for Facebook Application Development & Your Business

As a part of the growing Social Web, Facebook's Open Graph Beta will offer a social experience alongside many online activities previously unexposed to this type of interaction on a massive level.
23 Aug

SEO For Blogs: Blog Post Series Kickoff

Blog What? Design's "SEO for Blogs" Blog SeriesSEO. It's a term often thrown about very loosely by companies that make guarantees about astronomical boosts in your rankings for certain search terms that seem too good to be true. And they are. Search engine optimization (SEO) is a complex technique that encompasses a great number of disciplines, practices, and strategies. In fact, many parts of your website may contribute to your search engine optimization (or lack thereof), including the time it takes for pages to load, the way your posts are constructed, and the positioning of key words within your titles and content. In this brand new series, Blog What? Design Inc. will identify various ways to ensure that your website makes its way towards the top of search engine results without you falling victim to the SEO gimmicks and fluff clogging up the Internet and general blogosphere these days. SEO may sound like an intimidating mythical beast you can't quite figure out how to defeat, so here, we'll explain some fairly clear formulas that will help you improve your website's search engine placement and identify techniques that might hurt it.
16 Aug

WordPress 3.3: What to Expect in the Next WordPress Update for November 2011

The WordPress Logo.The WordPress development team announced the intended scope for WordPress 3.3 this July on the WordPress Development Updates blog. We can expect the following updates to be ready for sometime around November 15, 2011.

Integration of Plupload

If you've ever experienced trouble placing images properly in the lay out of your post, you can expect to experience a much more user-friendly experience with the integration of Plupload, a highly versatile upload handler that will be incorporated into the new version of WordPress 3.3 Plupload employs a variety of exciting coding languages and mechanisms like HTML 5 to streamline the process of inserting media into your posts. Jacob Gillespie, the talented developer behind this specific feature as a part of a Google Summer of Code 2011 project, expects to vastly improve the uploader with the integration of existing open source projects in addition to more modern features that increase speed and usability. In addition, Gillespie reports that he would also like to include:
  • Multiple file transports starting with HTML5 with a fallback to Flash, then a fallback to HTML4
  • Drag and drop uploading
  • On-the-fly image resizing
  • Hooks for in-browser image processing (so that a plugin could add pre-upload sepia tone, for example)
Keep in mind that you'll definitely need to be working with a fully updated and modern browser to experience most of these great new features (as we discussed last week).