Our Blog

Take a look at what we have been talking about

02 Dec

Posted by Roger Martin

We recently teamed up with the creative team at Quest Construction Marketing to develop a Joomla web site for our client Fire Design Solutions. The goal was to create an eye catching web site aimed at the architectural market promoting the Fire Design Solutions sister company FDS Consult, a specialist fire safety consultancy. To create the required look we had to base each page in the site on a different background image and float the content above it. The result is a very different look and feel, but with full CMS control from the Joomla back end making editing truly WYSIWYG. Other nifty tools employed in the build included Yoo Tools accordions to present more complex data in a user friendly way, and some cool AJAX controls on the meet the team page. Take a look for yourself, ...

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30 Nov

Posted by Roger Martin

We are on the verge of something of a digital publishing revolution with the advent of the iPad and the cheaper Android tablet's entering the market and creating a new channel for publishers and savvy direct marketers. It's possible that the way a fair segment of people view publications could be about to undergo a paradigm shift from paper to tablet. It won't be immediate, but fact that Rupert Murdoch is backing it heavily with the paywall initiative, and with the number of quality publications announcing plans to leverage the channel there is no doubt that this is going to be a growth sector through 2011. From our perspective, and owning the Page Flip brand, we look at these shifts with great interest. We recently completed a publishing app for the iPad and iPhone for a major US...

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30 Nov

Posted by Roger Martin

Jake, who is our Magento specialist is going to be starting his Zend certified training in the new year, and he started out with a taster from the online training specialists Logical Elements. Nick from Logical Elements was great in walking us through the interactive training process and showed much patience when the guys started to mess around with the tools, see picture below! So Jake is looking forward to getting started with the PHP training so he can get to grips with OOP and all that jazz, but most importantly so that he can take Magento customisation and integration to a new level. We'll keep you posted on his progress towards full certification!

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11 Nov

Posted by Roger Martin

Nifty little Social Networking device for creatives that integrates well with Twitter, Linked In and Facebook. just need to find the time to actually put our portfolio up there!

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05 Nov

Posted by Roger Martin

We've just finished a project with our friends from CIC for the well known Caterham company, manufacturers of quality fireplaces normally, but in this case for their very high quality granite kitchen worktops business. Basically they needed a nice website to showcase the different types of granite available to their customers, so we provided a CMS solution in Joomla that uses the Yoo Tools plugin with some mods to make for a fluid user experience. But it didn't stop there. The client wanted a nifty estimating system for reps on the road and third party distributors to use. For the front end we created a login area where they can go and create full blown estimates. The layout again controlled by a modified Yoo Tools set up, this time with a neat javascript accordian so that each st...

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04 Nov

Posted by Roger Martin

Well we said we would get into app development. it's a natural progression for us as digital marketers and web developers. James Bache, who looks after the Page Flip brand over here at STAR Digital hooked up with Xerox, one of his clients to produce an app for MK Electric, part of the Honeywell group of companies. The goal, to produce an app that allowed Distributors to search and view tech spec for their quite frankly enormous product range using an iPhone or iPad. James got under the bonnet of Xcode with the developers and they produced a great looking, smooth functioning app and got it listed on the app store. Whole process start to finish, 3 months. Done. Since then we've started work on quite a few more, and the next one to launch is actually part of a Chinese initi...

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04 Nov

Posted by Roger Martin

Wow. My last post was in June when we moved the the Old Schoolhouse in Castle Ashby! I don't feel like we've been able to look up since then as we've been working like mad on the redesign and development of the Fellows website. This one was not for the faint hearted, we had from early July until mid October to completely rebuild the site from the ground up in Joomla with direct integration to Microsoft Dynamics NAV and SQL Server. I think its fair to say that we are hugely impressed with what we've achieved, but we are knackered as well! Big ups go out to Andrew Matthews head of design over here for the stunning CSS and AJAX implementations, and the feedback from users has been awesome. The guys at Evo Soft looked after the NAV development on the local side, nice guys. So...

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18 Nov

Posted by rogerm

There is a newly passed amendment to the UK Companies Act means that any UK company has now, by law, to include the following information in their email footers (this means general email not e-mail marketing although best practice would suggest inclusion): Your company name Your registration number and registered address (if registered)* Your place of registration (e.g. England and Wales) *it is not sufficient to just include a vaild address, it must be your registered address.

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20 May

Posted by rogerm

Fellows & Sons Auctioneers in Birmingham have been a client with STAR Digital for 3 years, and we've helped them to make the transition from a largely offline business to one of the most forward thinking online companies in their vertical. They now use search and email effectively for acquisition and retention, and have recently got involved in using social media to promote and provoke discussion around their fine watch sales. So, it came as no surprise when Stephen Whittaker, managing partner, and the man with the belief and drive to push the business forwards recently asked us to get the site up and running in some European languages. Our recommendation was for cut down information pages, and that's exactly what we've done. French, Spanish, Italian and Russian pages have ...

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01 Apr

Posted by rogerm

We've been a bit too busy to post anything lately due to the volume of work over here at Star Digital. We've had new web builds to do for Swatkins Silverware, Crown Green Bowler Discount Centre and Filtersource, all of which are complex solutions. As always we made sure that each site was properly configured with Google Analytics so that our customers can get a good gauge of the traffic coming into their sites, and for the Bowlers, understanding the ROI on any advertising or email marketing spend. To that end we noticed that Google have launched a Google Analytics Individual qualification, and updated the Analytics University with some great videos that form the curriculum to the exam. Matt Cutts used Twitter to promote it. The great thing is that some of the videos really ...

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22 Jan

Posted by airtimeandy

The guys at Star Digital have begun work on the preparing for high growth programme from the East Midlands Development Agency (EMDA). As you can see from the photo, there was a lot of brainstorming going on, and our heads were hurting at the end of the day! [caption id="attachment_88" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Our brains were hurting when we had to come up with single words on post-it notes to decribe our business![/caption] What is it all about then this high growth programme? Well, we were identified as a fast growing agency, and the time had come for the management to identify the critical success factors for growth. The programme is designed to create a three year plan for the business, and for us to be coached through the strategy development, tactics and training fo...

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