A great graphic design portfolio can’t move mountains, but it can change your life with a new job or opportunity. AI and other factors are impacting graphic design hiring, making your portfolio more important than ever before.
And while some designers still carry a physical book of printed design examples, most portfolios are graphic designer websites. These sites show audiences much more than design skills like logo design or typography.
Whether you’re a full-time graphic designer or dabbling in design as a side project in your free time, it’s critical you create a sleek graphic design portfolio to showcase your work to potential clients.
Fortunately, we’ve created a list of 14 impressive graphic design portfolios, followed by instructions on how you can create your own. Keep reading to get all the tips you need to curate the perfect space to showcase your work.
Graphic Design Portfolio Website Examples
- Morag Myerscough
- Heather Shaw
- Mohamed Samir
- Gleb Kuznetsov
- Chris Tammar
- Sophia Yeshi
- Stefanie Brückler
- Chip Kidd
- MDZ Design
- Alex Trochut
- Tobias van Schneider
- Kate Moross
- Ling K
- Nisha K. Sethi
A graphic design portfolio is one of the most important elements a client needs to see when choosing a graphic designer — which means a portfolio is vital for proving your skill as a designer.
Additionally, a graphic design portfolio, much like a resume, provides necessary contact information, and any case studies you care to include from past employers.
Most portfolios today are graphic designer websites. This means that they’re not only a way to connect with clients. They also help graphic designers build communities and share their work with potential fans around the world.
So what does a graphic design portfolio need to look like to stand out? Some of the best graphic design portfolios today include these elements:
- Motion graphics
- Original illustrations
- Product design
- UX design
- Ad campaigns
- Brand identity
Let’s look at some graphic design portfolio website examples to inspire and motivate your portfolio development. You could be a traditional graphic designer or experimenting with new media. There’s something here for everyone.
Bright graphics, animations, and clean design make this an exceptional graphic design portfolio. This approach is great for designers who lean into the art of design. It also works for designers who take on more experimental or site-specific projects.
Why we chose this graphic design portfolio: Myerscough’s aesthetic is unique and this image-focused site quickly communicates her style.
Short sections of copy connect her visual brand to her background, professional experience, and personal philosophy. The combination makes the site feel like it shows the whole designer, not just a visualization of the work she does for clients.
2. Heather Shaw
This graphic design portfolio website includes samples of book and website designs, branding, and more. It’s good for designers who work in many different media but want to present a cohesive portfolio.
Why we chose this graphic design portfolio: Heather Shaw’s portfolio is super clear and easy to navigate. It shows a wide range of skills and approaches to solving client problems, but it’s also visually consistent.
The designer also uses text effectively to explain each project and to encourage further engagement with the work.
Samir’s work includes branding, typography, posters, and print design. So, this graphic design portfolio zeros in on a tight collection of award-winning designs.
This graphic design portfolio is on Behance. This makes it a good fit for graphic designers who want an online presence without designing their own website.
Why we love this graphic designer’s website: Besides the high quality of the design work, this portfolio shows a diverse range of approaches to typography and style. At the same time, it shows a consistent vision and passion for visual communication.
The printed design work is also well-photographed. While the designer could have added a digital file instead, the photographs give you a better sense of the final polished design.
Kuznetsov’s portfolio combines product design, user experience, and graphic design to create something entirely new. This Dribble-hosted portfolio has over 50 images, which could be overwhelming. But they’re split into seven easy-to-understand projects.
This makes it a great graphic design portfolio example for designers who want to show long-term or complex projects.
Why this is a great example of a graphic design portfolio website: From the images to his brief “About” statement, this designer makes his unique vision and personality part of the work and its presentation.
5. Chris Tammar
Great designers often let the work do the talking. It’s a streamlined graphic design portfolio that calls attention to client deliverables. When text is present, it adds to the value of the work, like mentioning other websites that featured their infographics. This is a great portfolio format for designers doing graphic design work like:
- Logo design
- Brochures for business clients
Why we chose this graphic design portfolio: This group of work is simple and to the point. It also shows off a wide range of skills and tactics with a consistent vision.
6. Sophia Yeshi
A clear header and tile design emphasize work samples from this powerful graphic designer.
While the tiles emphasize the designer’s unique style, you can click on each tile to get the full details about each project. This is a great approach for designers who want to share the deeper story behind each project while still making the site easy to navigate.
Why we love this graphic designer’s website: A distinct style is important in graphic design. That said, it can be tough to show how many ways you can apply that distinct style in a business context. Major brands, including Google, Nike, and Comcast, use Yeshi’s unique illustrative voice to speak for their brands.
This website portfolio makes that point clear, while still making graphic design the focus.
This portfolio includes packaging design, illustration, and web design as well as graphic design and branding work. It’s one of our favorite graphic designer websites because it’s clean and easy to navigate.
It also shows a lot of different examples of work at a glance. This makes it a great example for designers who aren’t sure how to organize all the work they want to include in their portfolio.
Why we love this graphic designer website example: Brückler’s graphic design portfolio focuses on the tiniest of details to create an excellent user experience. From the simple page loading animation to the thoughtful use of motion graphics, this designer hones in on the stunning details.
8. Chip Kidd
Book cover designer Chip Kidd’s graphic design portfolio website uses lightbox-style pop-ups. Popups make it easier to focus on each book cover. This is a smart way to narrow in on the visuals with a graphic design site while still making it easy to see all the work in one place.
Kidd uses a range of different styles for book covers, and it’s edited in a way that makes this range look natural and exciting instead of chaotic.
Why this is a great example of a graphic design portfolio website: The dark background makes this graphic designer’s style pop. And the simple side navigation gives users a quick path to learn more about the designer and his work.
9. MDZ Design
Concise and exciting images on this graphic designer website example give site visitors a peek at execution and strategy.
MDZ Design also offers product design and strategy to clients. This makes their graphic design portfolio a useful example for strategy-focused designers.
Why we love this graphic designer website example: The range of services this portfolio shows could be overwhelming or confusing. Instead, it’s a chance to see their approach to problem-solving. They also make it easy to see how their process leads to results for their clients.
10. Alex Trochut
This graphic design portfolio is also a home for Trochut’s product design, animations, music, and NFTs. It’s a great example for multimedia artists who want to present their work on a single website. It also works for creators with a big collection of work to show.
Why we love this graphic designer website example: The four-column layout of this site shows image thumbnails of varying sizes. Each column moves at a different pace as you scroll down the page.
This motion feels dynamic and exciting and reinforces this designer’s original takes on color, type, and layout.
This graphic design portfolio website uses a range of type sizes and contrasts to emphasize the ideas it communicates. This is a great approach for entrepreneurial designers. It’s also smart for anyone who does collaborations as part of their design work.
Why we love this graphic designer’s website: A sticky header and big blocks of color and text make this graphic designer website interesting to explore. This site also uses scale well. It combines big images with both big and small text to emphasize each client project.
12. Kate Moross
There are many ways to play up a unique style, and this graphic design website highlights this designer’s recent work as well as a full project archive. This is a great example for designers who also do illustration.
Why we chose this graphic design portfolio: Moross uses space effectively on this site. It’s easy to get an immediate sense of the designer’s distinct style. The simple navigation helps users refine their search to target a specific type of work, like hand-drawn type or editorial design.
13. Ling K
LingK’s portfolio features their latest project while also showing other industry niches. The structure of the website helps prospective clients quickly decide if they want to work with this designer.
Why this is a great example of a graphic design portfolio website: It can be tough to convey how campaign materials for a complex event, like a wedding or conference, work together. This designer effectively shows the breadth and depth of work for each project and makes it easy to see the value of each deliverable.
14. Nisha K. Sethi
Sethi’s portfolio is simple and straightforward. It puts the spotlight on each design project. The “About” section also tells a clear story that encourages further questions and conversation.
It can be tempting to tell an audience everything on your website. But a great portfolio should offer enough samples to entice clients to reach out and learn more, but not so much that it overwhelms. This website is a great example of offering just enough.
Why we love this graphic designer website example: This graphic design portfolio combines hand-lettering, printmaking, and other media with digital design. While this designer works in a range of media, their portfolio shows a strong voice that is effective across many channels.
How to Make a Graphic Design Portfolio
- Curate your best work, and show a wide breadth of skill.
- Choose the right platform to showcase your work.
- Include a professional case study, or client recommendations.
- Integrate your personality.
- Describe the creative process.
- Show non-client work, or side projects.
1. Curate your best work, and show a wide breadth of skill.
Lindsay Burke, a HubSpot Product Designer, emphasizes the importance of quality over quantity when it comes to curating a graphic design portfolio. She says, “I recommend selecting your strongest projects and making these the primary focus of your portfolio website.”
Ideally, your portfolio will feature your sharpest, most impressive 10-20 designs — undoubtedly, someone pursuing your portfolio won’t have the time to look at more, and if your first couple projects are impressive enough, they shouldn’t need to.
But it’s equally critical you show potential clients your versatility. If you’ve dabbled in logo design as well as video animation, it’s good to include both kinds of projects in your portfolio.
2. Choose the right platform to showcase your work.
Investing in a quality website with a custom domain URL will pay off in the long run by demonstrating your professionalism to potential clients.
Having your own website helps you organize your portfolio to suit all your business needs — for instance, perhaps you’ll include ‘Projects’, ‘About Me’, and ‘Contact Me’ sections, so visitors can peruse your content and then contact you without ever leaving the site.
Take a look at this list of the best website builders if you need help choosing a platform for your portfolio.
3. Include a professional case study or client recommendations.
Lindsay Burke told me it’s incredibly valuable to write out a case study to complement any website visuals — “Through a written case study, your site visitors can get a sense of your project’s background, the problem you were aiming to solve through design, and the process you took to arrive at a final deliverable. A lot of time, effort, and iteration goes into design solutions, and a written case study will help communicate your unique process.”
To cultivate a strong case study, consider including the background of the project, the problem, the process, your deliverable, and any next steps.
In the process section of your case study, Burke suggests including research, experience mapping, persona development, wire-framing, sketching, usability testing, and iteration.
Additionally, it will impress future clients if you can include recommendations from prior employers, which allows you to demonstrate a level of professionalism.
4. Integrate your personality.
As you can see in the examples above, each portfolio is drastically different depending on the artist’s unique style. Someone checking out Tobias van Schneider’s portfolio will expect something vastly different from someone looking at Ling K’s site. Ensure your portfolio — including layout, background, and website title — reflects who you are as a designer.
5. Describe the creative process.
Each designer has a unique process when working with clients — and the sooner a potential client can learn about your process, the better. It’s important you include context, so visitors can get a sense of how you handle challenges, and how your designs solve real-world problems.
Plus, including a description of your creative process can help a potential client figure out whether you’re capable of handling the scope of their project.
For instance, they might be unsure of your ability to handle graphic designs for mobile until they read how you single-handedly brainstormed and created the designs for another client’s mobile site. In this case, context is critical.
6. Show non-client work, or side projects.
Amanda Chong, a former HubSpot Designer, says, “Side projects are a great way to demonstrate your will to take initiative and your ability to balance multiple things at once. They’re also a great way to show some of the more experimental, creative ideas that you might not be able to show through your day-to-day work.”
If you’re just starting out, it’s acceptable to include side projects or non-client work so potential customers can get a sense of your ability and style.
Consider incorporating school work, a logo you designed for your aunt’s company, or an internal design you created for your current company — ideally, your designs will negate any concerns potential clients have over your lack of career experience.
Graphic Design Portfolio Ideas
- Help a local business or start-up with its design and brand.
- Create content for your own personal brand.
- Redesign an existing website.
- Create graphic design materials for a made-up company.
- Design a logo for a brand you love.
- Create a stock theme for WordPress.
- Take part in a design challenge.
1. Help a local business or start-up with its design and brand.
One of the easiest ways to begin building your client base is by reaching out to non-profits or local businesses in your area. Think about creating mock-ups or sketches in advance, These can help you give businesses a sense of your skill and vision.
Perhaps you think a local restaurant needs a new menu logo, or want to help a gift shop with their online marketing materials.
Projects like these will help you better understand local marketing challenges, and give you time to develop your skills in those areas. You never know what a pro-bono project could lead to next.
2. Create content for your own personal brand.
As you build personal brand content, take the time to ensure your marketing materials are cohesive and sleek.
Design a unique logo for your brand. Next, start building your website, and add that same design across various materials, including your business card and resume. This is also a great time to start a branded social media account, and to create posts that show off your design skills and interests.
Clients are more likely to work with you if they can see the type of high-quality work you’re able to create for yourself.
3. Redesign an existing website.
Don’t wait for your dream client to give you a call. Instead, create a complete website redesign for a well-known brand to prove your skills to future clients.
This is a well-known strategy already used by plenty of designers — just take a look at some of the impressive Behance mock-ups for brands like Twitch.
Additionally, Amanda Chong told me, “If you’re creating mockups for established brands to use as part of your portfolio, it’s important to pair this with a case study or description of the process that helped you arrive at your proposed design. Talk about what you think wasn’t working with the existing design, some of the constraints that you think the designers were working with, and why you made the decisions that you did.”
Chong added, “Mockups are great at showing your visual design skills, but don’t necessarily demonstrate your ability to work in a real-world context, so you’ll want to take the time to explain how you would have approached it in a true business setting.”
4. Create graphic design materials for a made-up company.
If your designs are impressive enough, potential clients won’t care that you created them for a fictitious company. In fact, you could impress them with your innovation and creativity.
Consider demonstrating your skills by putting together a creative brief for a fake company, complete with wireframes and sketches. Other projects you can create for imaginary companies include:
- Style guides
- Social media ads
- Apparel graphics
- Wrapping paper
- Brochures and email newsletters
- Simple GIFs
- Animated infographics
- Trade show booths
- Branded wall art
- Pitch decks
- Book covers
In due time, real companies will take notice.
5. Design a logo for a brand you love.
Stick to the type of content you enjoy designing. If you’re particularly adept at making logos, and are often inspired by the logos used by real brands, consider designing an alternative logo for a brand you like.
Then take a look at these inspiring reimagined NFL logos. While these NFL teams probably won’t make a shift, they’re great examples of the designers’ skills and creativity.
6. Create a stock theme for WordPress.
WordPress, a popular content management system, allows users to develop stock themes for WP. Best of all, if your theme is approved, you can sell it as a premium theme for extra cash.
Begin by studying WordPress’s most popular themes, and considering how you can create an impressive alternative. Take a look at WordPress’s Theme Review Requirements and this overview of how to create a child theme to learn more.
7. Take part in a design challenge.
To get inspired, practice your skills, or interact with other designers in a community and build your portfolio at the same time, think about participating in a design challenge.
Design challenges can also help you uncover skills you didn’t know you had by forcing you to step outside your design comfort zone.
Graphic Design Portfolio Tips
- Show your versatility.
- Display your best work.
- Include case studies.
- Make it clean and easy to navigate.
- Prominently display contact information.
- Display your unique personality.
You’ve done the work, and now you’re pulling together your graphic design portfolio. Try these tips to make your graphic design portfolio stand out.
1. Show your versatility.
A portfolio should show a range of different works, so you want to highlight what you can do. Some clients prefer a more streamlined look, while others are looking for more experimentation.
If you have clients from different industries, include some work from each industry. Then, edit your portfolio based on the kind of client you’re showing your portfolio to.
For example, if you’re meeting with a client in real estate, show work samples from similar industries.
You’ll also want to show anyone who sees your portfolio what you can do. So, if you create design logos, books, and motion graphics, include a little bit of everything in your portfolio.
2. Display your best work.
That said, try to limit your portfolio to your best work. Don’t include a piece in your portfolio just to show that you can do it. The way that you edit your portfolio shows that you understand your strengths and know how to play them up. So, edit your portfolio to include only your best work.
If you’re great with one skill set but not as good with another, edit your portfolio to spotlight that skill. If possible, create portfolio pieces that show many skill sets at the same time.
For example, if you love hand lettering, a poster could emphasize your graphic design skills alongside this unique ability.
3. Include case studies.
Every client is unique, and each will teach you something new. As you continue to work with different clients, build up a collection of these stories.
Try not to throw anything away without documenting it. That page of thumbnails might not be much to look at on its own, but this kind of work in progress is a great way to show prospective clients how you solve problems.
When you present case studies in your portfolio, start with the initial problem your client approached you with. Next, show what the conversation and ideation process looked like over time. As you pull your case study together, don’t forget to include the final solution you delivered.
4. Make it clean and easy to navigate.
Design is about more than visual skills, it’s about communicating. So the format of your portfolio, whether it’s printed or online, should be clear and simple to scan.
This point is especially important for graphic designer websites. It can be tempting to build a website that shows off the latest trends or to add Easter eggs that people need to hunt for. There’s a fine line between art and design, and those approaches can be super inspiring.
But building a complex site can also mean that clients in a hurry could miss some of your best work.
For example, a graphic designer once sent his portfolio to a creative director friend of mine. They liked the designer’s drawing but didn’t see much of the graphic design or web work that he talked about in his resume. With a little digging, they found a URL in one of the sketchbook drawings, and that URL led to his website.
This hide-and-seek process was cool, but it wasn’t clear or easy to navigate. This scenario could have been a missed opportunity for that designer.
5. Prominently display contact information.
If someone wants to talk to you, there are many places they can find you online. But you want to make it easy for them, and for you. You don’t want to miss out on an important meeting because a client reached out to you with an email you don’t check anymore.
Most graphic designer websites have a contact page that has your contact information. Once you add this to your site, be sure to check that the links and forms are working.
6. Display your unique personality.
There are thousands of successful graphic designers out there, and you might be competing against some of them for your next client. So, the best tip for a great portfolio is to be yourself.
Whether you have a feel for typography or are talented with color, show off the way that you see the world in your graphic design portfolio. Think about every detail, and then execute to the best of your ability.
Whether it’s the first version of your portfolio or the 200th, make it feel like something only you could create.
The best graphic design portfolios aren’t ever finished.
You’ve learned about the value of a graphic design portfolio and checked out some of the best portfolio examples. You read about how to create your portfolio, then you scanned some smart ideas to build on the graphic design work you’ve already completed.
So what’s next?
Even the best graphic design portfolios need constant updates. Keep in mind that while your first graphic design portfolio may be complete, portfolio building won’t ever really end.
What do you want to tackle for your next project? Social media to promote your new portfolio? A new resume or professional bio to attract clients? The possibilities are endless.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in March 2019 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
The marketing lifecycle: An overview
Remember when digital marketing was simple? Create content, throw it over the wall, hope for the best.
Note that we said “simple,” not effective.
To be effective is more complicated, and this keeps accelerating. There are so many options, so many channels, and so many audiences, that effective digital marketing requires a term to which people often react strongly—
Very few people inherently like the idea of “process.” It brings forth visions of rigidity and inertia.
But there simply has to be a framework in which to produce and publish effective marketing assets. Without this, you have nothing but chaos from which productive work gets done accidentally, at best.
How did it get this way for the enterprise? How did things become so interconnected?
- Marketing isn’t a point in time, it’s an activity stream. It’s a line of dominoes you need to knock over, roughly in order. Lots of organizations do well at some, but fail on others, and thus break the chain of what could be an effective process.
- Marketing activities overlap. It’d be great if we could do one thing at a time, but the marketing pipeline is never empty. Campaigns target different audiences at the same time, and new campaigns are being prepared as existing campaigns are closing.
- Marketing involves a lot of actors at vastly different levels. There’s your content team, of course, reviewers, external agencies and contractors, designers, developers, and—of course—stakeholders and executives. Each group has different needs for collaboration, input, and reporting.
Some of the best business advice boils down to this: “Always understand the big picture.” You might be asked to do one specific thing in a process, but make sure you understand the context of that specific thing—where does it fit in the larger framework? Where does it get input from? How are its outputs used?
In this article, we’re going to zoom out for an overhead view of how Optimizely One helps you juggle the complete marketing lifecycle, from start to finish, without letting anything drop.
Ideas are born everywhere—maybe with you, maybe with your staff, maybe with someone who has no connection with marketing at all, and maybe from an external source, like an ad agency or PR firm. Leading organizations have found a way to widen the top end of their pipeline—the start of their content marketing funnel—and take in more ideas from more sources.
Good ideas combine. Someone has one half of an idea, and someone else has the other half. The goal of effective collaboration is to get those two pieces together. One plus one can sometimes equal three, and more ideas mean better ideas overall. Creativity is about getting more puzzle pieces on the table so you can figure out which ones fit your strategy.
How do you manage the flow of ideas? How do you make sure good ideas don’t get dropped, but rather become great content? The only way to publish great content is to get ideas into the top end of the pipe.
Optimizely One can streamline and accelerate your content intake using templated intake forms mapped to intelligent routing rules and shared queues. Everyone in your organization can know where content is developed and how to contribute to ideas, content, and campaigns currently in-process. Your content team can easily manage and collaborate on requests, meaning content development can become focused, rather than spread out across the organization.
Campaigns don’t exist in a vacuum. They share the stage with other campaigns—both in terms of audience attention and employee workload. Leading organizations ensure that their campaigns are coordinated, for maximum audience effect and efficiency of workload.
Pick a time scale and plan it from overhead. What campaigns will you execute during this period? In what order? How do they overlap? Then, break each campaign down—what tasks are required to complete and launch? Who owns them? In what stage of completion are they in? What resources are required to complete them?
Good marketing campaigns aren’t run in isolation. They’re a closely aligned part of an evolving body of work, carefully planned and executed.
Optimizely One provides comprehensive editorial calendaring and scheduling. Every marketing activity can have an easily accessible strategic brief and dedicated workspaces in which to collaborate. Your content team and your stakeholders can know, at a glance, what marketing activities are in-process, when they’re scheduled to launch, who is assigned to what, and what’s remaining on the calendar.
Good content takes fingers on keyboards, but that’s not all.
Content creators need frameworks in which to generate effective content. They need the tools to share, collaborate, structure, stage, and approve their work. Good content comes in part from tooling designed to empower content creators.
Your content team needs a home base—the digital equivalent of an artist’s studio. They need a platform which is authoritative for all their marketing assets; a place that everyone on the team knows is going to have the latest schedules, the latest drafts, the official assets, and every task on the road to publication.
Content creation isn’t magic—it doesn’t just appear out of the ether. It comes from intentional teams working in structured frameworks.
Optimizely One gives your editors the tools they need for the content creation process, AI-enabled editing environments for fingers-on-keyboards, all the way through intelligent workflows for collaboration and approvals. Authors can write, designers can upload and organize, project managers can combine and coordinate, stakeholders can review, and external teams can collaborate. All within a framework centered around moving your campaigns forward.
Leading organizations look at content beyond its immediate utility. Everything your content teams do becomes an incremental part of an evolving body of work. Content doesn’t appear and disappear; rather, it continually enlarges and refines a body of work that represents your organization over time.
Good creative teams remix and transform old ideas into new ones. They can locate content assets quickly and easily to evolve them into new campaigns quickly. They don’t reinvent the wheel every time, because they lean on a deep reservoir of prior art and existing creative components.
Digital asset and content management should store content in a structured, atomic format, allowing your organization to store, retrieve, organize, and re-use marketing assets quickly and easily.
Optimizely One gives your content team a place to store their content assets, from text and rich media. Content can be archived and organized, either manually, or by using AI to automatically extract tags. Content can be stored as pure data, free from presentation, which makes it easy to re-use. Your content team will always know where to find work in progress, media to support emerging campaigns, or assets from past campaigns. Brand portals make it easy to share assets with external organizations.
Business happens all over the world in every language. To effectively compete around the world, your content needs to be globalized.
Globalization of content is a holistic practice that affects every part of the content lifecycle. Words need to be translated, of course, but you also need to consider cultural globalization—images and symbols that might change—as well as globalization for numbers, currency, and time zones. Going even deeper, you might have to make design changes to accommodate things like differing word lengths and the flow of text.
Beyond simply changing content, your work process is affected. When does translation happen? Who is authorized to order it? Who can perform it? How do you bring external translation companies into your internal processes, and how does this affect the flow of content through your organization?
Optimizely One helps you manage the entire globalization process, whether it’s done in-house or automatically via one of our translation partners. Your customers can be served content in their language and culture, and you can carefully control the alternate, “fallback” experience for languages not yet available, or when you’re not translating all of your content.
Some experiences need to be visually composed from a palette of content and design components. Designers and marketers want to see exactly what their content looks like before they publish.
In some cases, this is easy—everyone should be able to see what a web page looks like before it goes live. But what about your mobile app? What about display advertising? A social media update?
And what happens when you’re modifying content based on behavior and demographics? If you want to see how your web page will look for someone from California who has visited your site before and already downloaded your whitepaper on their iPhone…can you?
Content no longer leaves your organization on a single channel. Composition and preview is always contextual—there is no single, default experience. Leading organizations want full control over their visual presentation and they know that they need to see their content through the eyes of their customers.
Optimizely One provides the tools to visually compose experiences across multiple channels and can preview that experience when viewed through the personalization lens of whatever demographic and behavioral data you can dream up. And this works regardless of channel: web, email, display advertising—everything can be previewed in real-time.
Content can’t do any good unless it can reach your customers. You need to publish your content to them, wherever they are, which means having the flexibility to push content into multiple channels, in multiple formats.
A consumable piece of media is an “artifact.” Your content is the idea and message that make up that artifact. Leading organizations develop their content separate from any concept of an artifact, then transform it into different formats to fit the channel that will spread their message most effectively.
Sure, make a web page—but also push that content to your mobile app, and into your social networks. Broadcast a text message, and an email. While you’re at it, push the information into the display panel in the elevators. Let’s be bold and broadcast it on the TV screens that play while your customers fill up with gas.
The key is delivery flexibility. The world of content delivery has changed remarkably in just the last few years. It will no-doubt change more in the future. No platform can anticipate what’s coming, so you just need the flexibility to be ready to adapt to what happens.
Optimizely One provides complete delivery flexibility. Our systems store your content separate from presentation, and allow multiple ways to access it, from traditional websites to headless APIs to connect your content to mobile apps or other decoupled experiences. Your content can be combined with internally-stored content or third-party content to provide a seamless “content reservoir” to draw on from all of your channels.
Throughout this lifecycle, we’ve moved from content, to artifacts, and now on to “experiences.”
One person consuming an artifact—reading a web page, listening to a podcast, watching a video—is an experience. Just like one piece of content can generate more than one artifact, one artifact should enable thousands of experiences.
Technology has advanced to the point where all of those experiences can be managed. Instead of every customer getting the same experience, it can be personalized to that specific customer in that specific moment.
You can do this using simple demographic or technographic data—perhaps you cut down the information and make your content more task-oriented when you detect someone is on a mobile device. However, the real power comes when you begin tracking behavior, consolidating information about your customers, and giving them specific content based on what you’ve observed.
Leading organizations have a single location to track customer behavior and data. For every experience, they know exactly what this customer has done, how they’ve interacted with the organization, and they can predict what they’ll do next. Content and artifacts will morph themselves to fit each individual experience.
Optimizely One connects both customer behavior and demographics along with the tools to activate that data to affect your customers’ experiences. Our platform allows you to track customer behavior and match that with customer demographics—this includes behavior tracking for customers you can’t even identify yet. Based on that behavior and stored data, editors can modify experiences in real-time, changing content and design to match to what each individual customer is most likely to respond. Or let the machine do the work, with personalized content and product recommendations.
No matter how much you know, customers will always surprise you. The right answer to persuading your customer to take an action might be something you’re not even thinking of. Or, you might have an idea, but you’re not confident enough to bank on it. And let’s face it—sometimes, you just love two different ideas.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could publish more than one thing?
You absolutely can. And you absolutely should.
Leading organizations let go of the idea that an experience is bound to one version of an artifact. Don’t just write one title for that blog post—write three. Publish them all and show them randomly. Let your customers tell you—by their next action—which one was the right one to use.
Experimentation allows you to try new things without the inertia of re-considering and re-drafting all your content. Ideas can go from your mind to pixels on the screen quickly and easily, and you can see what works and what doesn’t. Try a new title, or next text on a button. Does it give you better results? If so, great, keep it. If not, throw it away and try something else.
Refine, refine, refine. The idea that you publish content in one form and just hope it’s the right one is a set of handcuffs that can be tough to shake. But the results can be impressive.
Optimizely One allows you to quickly create and publish multiple variations of content and content elements to any channel. You can separate your content into elements and try different combinations to see which one drives your customers to move forward in their journey, then automatically route more traffic through winning combinations. You can manage feature rollouts and soft-launches, enabling specific functionality for specific audiences in any channel.
The key to a learning and evolving content team is a transparent and unflinching look into what happens to your content after it’s published.
Analytics need to be considered in the context of the entire content domain. What content performs well but has low traffic? What content is consumed often but never moves customers down their buying journey? Customer behavior needs to be tracked carefully, then used to segment customers into audiences, based on both your content team’s observations and insights provided by AI.
Optimizely One offers complete behavior tracking and content analysis, showing you what content works, what content doesn’t, and what your customers are doing during every step of their relationship with your entire digital estate.
Juggle the entire lifecycle
“Publishing myopia” prevents most organizations from truly benefiting from the power of their content and marketing technology. Too many ideas are undercut by an obsession with the publish button. We rush content out the door and just throw it over the wall and hope it lands.
Within that mode of thinking, great ideas get trapped under the surface. Great content is delivered to only one channel in one language. Great experiences never see the light of day because content exists in only one form. And every customer sees the same thing, no matter how their own experience might benefit from something else.
Remember: the marketing lifecycle is a series of stages
Each stage builds on the last and allows content to grow from a random idea your team takes in from the field and turns it into a spectacular multi-channel experience which rearranges and modifies itself to fit each customer.
Juggling all of the steps in the marketing lifecycle can be done, but it’s easy to lose the forest for the trees and get too myopic about individual steps in this process. Leading organizations step back, consider the entire cycle from start to finish, and make sure their ideas, their products, and their messages are enhanced and strengthened in every step.
Comparing Credibility of Custom Chatbots & Live Chat
Addressing customer issues quickly is not merely a strategy to distinguish your brand; it’s an imperative for survival in today’s fiercely competitive marketplace.
Customer frustration can lead to customer churn. That’s precisely why organizations employ various support methods to ensure clients receive timely and adequate assistance whenever they require it.
Nevertheless, selecting the most suitable support channel isn’t always straightforward. Support teams often grapple with the choice between live chat and chatbots.
The automation landscape has transformed how businesses engage with customers, elevating chatbots as a widely embraced support solution. As more companies embrace technology to enhance their customer service, the debate over the credibility of chatbots versus live chat support has gained prominence.
However, customizable chatbot continue to offer a broader scope for personalization and creating their own chatbots.
In this article, we will delve into the world of customer support, exploring the advantages and disadvantages of both chatbots and live chat and how they can influence customer trust. By the end, you’ll have a comprehensive understanding of which option may be the best fit for your business.
The Rise of Chatbots
Chatbots have become increasingly prevalent in customer support due to their ability to provide instant responses and cost-effective solutions. These automated systems use artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP) to engage with customers in real-time, making them a valuable resource for businesses looking to streamline their customer service operations.
Advantages of Chatbots
One of the most significant advantages of custom chatbots is their round-the-clock availability. They can respond to customer inquiries at any time, ensuring that customers receive support even outside regular business hours.
Custom Chatbots provide consistent responses to frequently asked questions, eliminating the risk of human error or inconsistency in service quality.
Implementing chatbots can reduce operational costs by automating routine inquiries and allowing human agents to focus on more complex issues.
Chatbots can handle multiple customer interactions simultaneously, making them highly scalable as your business grows.
Disadvantages of Chatbots
Chatbots may struggle to understand complex or nuanced inquiries, leading to frustration for customers seeking detailed information or support.
Lack of Empathy
Chatbots lack the emotional intelligence and empathy that human agents can provide, making them less suitable for handling sensitive or emotionally charged issues.
Initial Setup Costs
Developing and implementing chatbot technology can be costly, especially for small businesses.
The Role of Live Chat Support
Live chat support, on the other hand, involves real human agents who engage with customers in real-time through text-based conversations. While it may not offer the same level of automation as custom chatbots, live chat support excels in areas where human interaction and empathy are crucial.
Advantages of Live Chat
Live chat support provides a personal touch that chatbots cannot replicate. Human agents can empathize with customers, building a stronger emotional connection.
For inquiries that require a nuanced understanding or involve complex problem-solving, human agents are better equipped to provide in-depth assistance.
Customers often trust human agents more readily, especially when dealing with sensitive matters or making important decisions.
Human agents can adapt to various customer personalities and communication styles, ensuring a positive experience for diverse customers.
Disadvantages of Live Chat
Live chat support operates within specified business hours, which may not align with all customer needs, potentially leading to frustration.
The speed of response in live chat support can vary depending on agent availability and workload, leading to potential delays in customer assistance.
Maintaining a live chat support team with trained agents can be expensive, especially for smaller businesses strategically.
Building Customer Trust: The Credibility Factor
When it comes to building customer trust, credibility is paramount. Customers want to feel that they are dealing with a reliable and knowledgeable source. Both customziable chatbots and live chat support can contribute to credibility, but their effectiveness varies in different contexts.
Building Trust with Chatbots
Chatbots can build trust in various ways:
Chatbots provide consistent responses, ensuring that customers receive accurate information every time they interact with them.
Chatbots offer instant responses, which can convey a sense of efficiency and attentiveness.
Chatbots can assure customers of their data security through automated privacy policies and compliance statements.
However, custom chatbots may face credibility challenges when dealing with complex issues or highly emotional situations. In such cases, the lack of human empathy and understanding can hinder trust-building efforts.
Building Trust with Live Chat Support
Live chat support, with its human touch, excels at building trust in several ways:
Human agents can show empathy by actively listening to customers’ concerns and providing emotional support.
Live chat agents can tailor solutions to individual customer needs, demonstrating a commitment to solving their problems.
Human agents can adapt to changing customer requirements, ensuring a personalized and satisfying experience.
However, live chat support’s limitations, such as availability and potential response times, can sometimes hinder trust-building efforts, especially when customers require immediate assistance.
Finding the Right Balance
The choice between custom chatbots and live chat support is not always binary. Many businesses find success by integrating both options strategically:
Use chatbots for initial inquiries, providing quick responses, and gathering essential information. This frees up human agents to handle more complex cases.
Escalation to Live Chat
Implement a seamless escalation process from custom chatbots to live chat support when customer inquiries require a higher level of expertise or personal interaction.
Regularly analyze customer interactions and feedback to refine your custom chatbot’s responses and improve the overall support experience.
In the quest to build customer trust, both chatbots and live chat support have their roles to play. Customizable Chatbots offer efficiency, consistency, and round-the-clock availability, while live chat support provides the human touch, empathy, and adaptability. The key is to strike the right balance, leveraging the strengths of each to create a credible and trustworthy customer support experience. By understanding the unique advantages and disadvantages of both options, businesses can make informed decisions to enhance customer trust and satisfaction in the digital era.
The Rise in Retail Media Networks
As LL Cool J might say, “Don’t call it a comeback. It’s been here for years.”
Paid advertising is alive and growing faster in different forms than any other marketing method.
Magna, a media research firm, and GroupM, a media agency, wrapped the year with their ad industry predictions – expect big growth for digital advertising in 2024, especially with the pending US presidential political season.
But the bigger, more unexpected news comes from the rise in retail media networks – a relative newcomer in the industry.
Watch CMI’s chief strategy advisor Robert Rose explain how these trends could affect marketers or keep reading for his thoughts:
GroupM expects digital advertising revenue in 2023 to conclude with a 5.8% or $889 billion increase – excluding political advertising. Magna believes ad revenue will tick up 5.5% this year and jump 7.2% in 2024. GroupM and Zenith say 2024 will see a more modest 4.8% growth.
Robert says that the feeling of an ad slump and other predictions of advertising’s demise in the modern economy don’t seem to be coming to pass, as paid advertising not only survived 2023 but will thrive in 2024.
What’s a retail media network?
On to the bigger news – the rise of retail media networks. Retail media networks, the smallest segment in these agencies’ and research firms’ evaluation, will be one of the fastest-growing and truly important digital advertising formats in 2024.
GroupM suggests the $119 billion expected to be spent in the networks this year and should grow by a whopping 8.3% in the coming year. Magna estimates $124 billion in ad revenue from retail media networks this year.
“Think about this for a moment. Retail media is now almost a quarter of the total spent on search advertising outside of China,” Robert points out.
You’re not alone if you aren’t familiar with retail media networks. A familiar vernacular in the B2C world, especially the consumer-packaged goods industry, retail media networks are an advertising segment you should now pay attention to.
Retail media networks are advertising platforms within the retailer’s network. It’s search advertising on retailers’ online stores. So, for example, if you spend money to advertise against product keywords on Amazon, Walmart, or Instacart, you use a retail media network.
But these ad-buying networks also exist on other digital media properties, from mini-sites to videos to content marketing hubs. They also exist on location through interactive kiosks and in-store screens. New formats are rising every day.
Retail media networks make sense. Retailers take advantage of their knowledge of customers, where and why they shop, and present offers and content relevant to their interests. The retailer uses their content as a media company would, knowing their customers trust them to provide valuable information.
Think about these 2 things in 2024
That brings Robert to two things he wants you to consider for 2024 and beyond. The first is a question: Why should you consider retail media networks for your products or services?
Advertising works because it connects to the idea of a brand. Retail media networks work deep into the buyer’s journey. They use the consumer’s presence in a store (online or brick-and-mortar) to cross-sell merchandise or become the chosen provider.
For example, Robert might advertise his Content Marketing Strategy book on Amazon’s retail network because he knows his customers seek business books. When they search for “content marketing,” his book would appear first.
However, retail media networks also work well because they create a brand halo effect. Robert might buy an ad for his book in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal because he knows their readers view those media outlets as reputable sources of information. He gains some trust by connecting his book to their media properties.
Smart marketing teams will recognize the power of the halo effect and create brand-level experiences on retail media networks. They will do so not because they seek an immediate customer but because they can connect their brand content experience to a trusted media network like Amazon, Nordstrom, eBay, etc.
The second thing Robert wants you to think about relates to the B2B opportunity. More retail media network opportunities for B2B brands are coming.
You can already buy into content syndication networks such as Netline, Business2Community, and others. But given the astronomical growth, for example, of Amazon’s B2B marketplace ($35 billion in 2023), Robert expects a similar trend of retail media networks to emerge on these types of platforms.
“If I were Adobe, Microsoft, Salesforce, HubSpot, or any brand with big content platforms, I’d look to monetize them by selling paid sponsorship of content (as advertising or sponsored content) on them,” Robert says.
As you think about creative ways to use your paid advertising spend, consider the retail media networks in 2024.
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Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute
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