4 Technical Terms You Need to Know Before Interviewing a Digital Agency

Aug 8, 2011

Roeland de Jong

Even though marketing departments, who are oftentimes responsible for digital initiatives, primarily approach online marketing from a creative and/or business perspective, we cannot ignore the fact that the tools we use to create successful engaging experiences on the web remain inherently technological.

This fact forces us to constantly bear in mind technological boundaries when shaping new campaigns in the online landscape, therefore binding us to the task of continuously staying up-to-date to keep ourselves on the edge of what’s new and to maintain the pattern of delivering value-adding concepts to our brands.

It seems as if technological innovations are introduced with exponentially increasing speed. Obviously, we hear about them every now and then, but do we really get a chance, in the rush of day-to-day jobs, to understand the implications of an ever-evolving web and its new tools? Do we have time to understand these tools and pass concepts to our brand before the technology becomes common knowledge? And most importantly, do we have the time to formulate a plan before the competition takes the advantage by launching a new idea integrating this innovation?

Innovation online has long been a differentiator for brands. If a brand could grasp the opportunity to showcase a new technology in the industry, it would generate free publicity (as with all things new), and attract online audiences by triggering the intrinsic emotion of curiosity.

However, with digital developments introduced every day, it becomes harder to be on the edge of all things new in our web-based world. And with an overkill of innovations, they become less interesting for both the media and the audience. Therefore, instead of chasing the latest novelty, we need to develop a sense of how to cleverly bridge technology with brand specific marketing objectives, advancement of customer engagement and relationships, and sales to start using the right new feature for the right purpose.

We are getting to a point where choosing the correct toolbox to achieve goals overrules furnishing it with the latest technologies out there. And to understand what new elements fit our vision and needs, we need to sometimes dive into the geeky world of the internet in order to be able to spark new ideas that help move our brands forward in the digital space.

Be a nerd sometimes, and investigate the new possibilities of internet technology to understand the new boundaries of your creative space. It might bring you sufficient knowledge to plan ahead and join digital teams of carefully selected agencies or consultants in a quest for successful online activity.

An appetizer for thought:

 

HTML5

HTML5 is, logically, the fifth revision of the HTML standard. Even though it is still under development, UX designers are already reaping the first benefits of its powerful tools.

A short introduction to the graphic possibilities of HTML5 on Apple.com:

http://www.apple.com/html5/

THE SEMANTIC WEB

Probably the least visible but most important innovation that comes with the toolbox of HTML5 is the introduction of new ways to tag, accessorize and organize elements on your webpage. It will allow machines (such as search engines) to more effectively interpret the content on your website, driving, for example, better organized search results.

CSS3

This is a language that is used to style your webpages. With the new CSS3 standard, we, for instance, can start using custom fonts online, which enables brands to create designs that closely match the brand identity and its typographical guidelines.

See examples of Custom Font usage on Webdesign Ledger:

http://webdesignledger.com/inspiration/30-examples-of-effective-font-replacement-in-web-design

JAVASCRIPT FRAMEWORKS

Javascript is a supporting language that is used to make websites more dynamic both from a behavior (animation) and content (dynamically loaded substance) perspective.

See some striking examples on NET TUTS+:

http://net.tutsplus.com/articles/web-roundups/the-20-most-practical-and-creative-uses-of-jquery/

 

Photo Credits: David Woolley