We are the digital agency
crafting brand experiences
for the modern audience.
We are Fame Foundry.

See our work. Read the Fame Foundry magazine.

We love our clients.

Fame Foundry seeks out bold brands that wish to engage their public in sincere, evocative ways.

WorkWeb DesignSportsEvents

Platforms for racing in the 21st century.

Fame Foundry puts the racing experience in front of millions of fans, steering motorsports to the modern age.

“Fame Foundry created something never seen before, allowing members to interact in new ways and providing them a central location to call their own. It also provides more value to our sponsors than we have ever had before.”

—Ryan Newman

Technology on the track.

Providing more than just web software, our management systems enhance and reinforce a variety of services by different racing organizations which work to evolve the speed, efficiency, and safety measures, aiding their process from lab to checkered flag.

WorkWeb DesignRetail

Setting the pace across 44 states.

With over 1100 locations, thousands of products, and millions of transactions, Shoe Show creates a substantial retail footprint in shoe sales.

The sole of superior choice.

With over 1100 locations, thousands of products, and millions of transactions, Shoe Show creates a substantial retail footprint in shoe sales.

WorkWeb DesignRetail

The contemporary online pharmacy.

Medichest sets a new standard, bringing the boutique experience to the drug store.

Integrated & Automated Marketing System

All the extensive opportunities for public engagement are made easily definable and effortlessly automated.

Scheduled promotions, sales, and campaigns, all precisely targeted for specific demographics within the whole of the Medichest audience.

WorkWeb DesignSocial

Home Design & Decor Magazine offers readers superior content on designer home trends on any device.

  • By selectively curating the very best from their individual markets, each localized catalog comes to exhibit the trending, pertinent visual flavors specific to each region.

  • Beside the swaths of inspirational home photography spreads, Home Design & Decor provides exhaustive articles and advice by proven professionals in home design.

  • The art of home ingenuity always dances between the timeless and the experimental. The very best in these intersecting principles offer consistent sources of modern innovation.

WorkWeb DesignSocial

  • Post a need on behalf of yourself, a family member or your community group, whether you need volunteers or funds to support your cause.

  • Search by location, expertise and date, and connect with people in your very own community who need your time and talents.

  • Start your own Neighborhood or Group Page and create a virtual hub where you can connect and converse about the things that matter most to you.

December 2016
By Kimberly Barnes

Going the Distance: Four Ways to Build a Better Customer Loyalty Program for Your Brand

Loyalty programs are no longer a novelty. That means that yesterday’s strategies won’t work moving forward, so look for ways to rise above the noise, setting yourself apart from the cloying drone of countless other cookie-cutter programs.
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Going the Distance: Four Ways to Build a Better Customer Loyalty Program for Your Brand

article-thedistance-lg It’s easy enough for a customer to join your loyalty program, especially when you’re offering an incentive such as discounts. All your customer has to do is give out some basic information, and voila! They’re in the fold, a brand new loyalty member with your company. From there, it’s happily ever after. You offer the perks; they stand solidly by you, bringing you their continued business. Simple. Or is it? In reality, just how many of those customers are act ively participating in your loyalty program? Do you know? Sure, loyalty program memberships are on the rise according to market research company eMarketer, having jumped 25 percent in the space of just two years. However, that figure may be a bit misleading. The truth is that, while loyalty program sign-ups may be more numerous, active participation in such programs is actually in decline. At the time of the study, the average US household had memberships in 29 loyalty programs; yet consumers were only active in 12 of those. That’s just 41 percent. And even that meager figure represents a drop of 2 percentage points per year over each of the preceding four years, according to a study by loyalty-marketing research company COLLOQUY.

When discounts just aren’t enough

So what’s a brand to do? How can you make your loyalty program worth your customer’s while—as well as your own? After all, gaining a new loyalty member doesn’t mean much if your customer isn’t actively participating in your program. Consider this: Does your customer loyalty program offer members anything different from what your competitors are offering? Chances are your program includes discounts. That’s a given. And what customer doesn’t appreciate a good discount? But when every other company out there is providing this staple benefit in comparable amounts, it becomes less and less likely that customers will remain loyal to any one particular brand. Frankly, it’s all too easy for customers to get lost in a sea of loyalty member discounts. They’re everywhere. In fact, just under half of internet users perceive that all rewards programs are alike, according to a 2015 eMarketer survey. The key to success, then, is to differentiate your business from the crowd. If you can offer your customers something unique and valuable beyond the usual discount, chances are they’ll be more likely to stick with your brand. Here’s some inspiration from companies who get it.

Virgin: Reward more purchases with more benefits.

That’s not to say you need to get rid of discounts entirely. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. Customers still love a good discount. The goal is to be creative in terms of the loyalty perks you offer. Take the Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, for example. As part of its loyalty program, the airline allows members to earn miles and tier points. Members are inducted at the Club Red tier, from which they can move up to Club Silver and then Club Gold. Here, it’s not just a discount. It’s status. And people respond to feeling important, elite. Still, even where the rewards themselves are concerned, Virgin is motivating loyalty customers with some pretty attractive offers. At the Club Red tier, members earn flight miles and receive discounts on rental cars, airport parking, hotels and holiday flights. But as members rise in tiers, they get even more. At the Club Silver tier, members earn 50 percent more points on flights, access to expedited check-in, and priority standby seating. And once they reach the top, Club Gold members receive double miles, priority boarding and access to exclusive clubhouses where they can get a drink or a massage before their flight. Now that’s some serious incentive to keep coming back for more. Discounts are still part of the equation – but they are designed with innovation and personal value in mind, elevating them to more than just savings.

Amazon Prime: Pay upfront and become a VIP.

What if your customers only had to pay a one-time upfront fee to get a year’s worth of substantial benefits? It may not sound like the smartest business idea at first glance. But take a closer look. Amazon Prime users pay a nominal $99 a year to gain free, two-day shipping on millions of products with no minimum purchase. And that’s just one benefit of going Prime. It’s true that Amazon loses $1-2 billion a year on Prime. This comes as no surprise given the incredible value the program offers. But get this: Amazon makes up for its losses in markedly higher transaction frequency. Specifically, Prime members spend an average of $1,500 a year on Amazon.com, compared with $625 spent by non-Prime users, a ccording to a 2015 report from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners.

Patagonia: Cater to customer values.

Sometimes, the draw for consumers isn’t saving money or getting a great deal. The eco-friendly outdoor clothing company Patagonia figured this out back in 2011, when it partnered with eBay to launch its Common Threads Initiative: a program that allows customers to resell their used Patagonia clothing via the company’s website. Why is this program important to customers? And how does it benefit Patagonia? The company’s brand embraces environmental and social responsibility, so it was only fitting that they create a platform for essentially recycling old clothing rather than merely throwing it away. The Common Threads Initiative helps Patagonia build a memorable brand and fierce loyalty by offering its customers a cause that aligns with deep personal values. OK, so their customers get to make a little money, too. Everybody wins.

American Airlines: Gamify your loyalty program.

If you’re going to offer your customers a loyalty program, why not make it f un? After all, engagement is key to building a strong relationship with your customer. And what better way to achieve that goal than making a game of it. American Airlines had this very thing in mind when it created its AAdvantage Passport Challenge following its merger with USAirways. The goal: find a new way to engage customers as big changes were underway. Using a custom Facebook application, American Airlines created a virtual passport to increase brand awareness while offering members a chance to earn bonus points. Customers earned these rewards through a variety of game-like activities, from answering trivia questions to tracking travel through a personalized dashboard. In the end, participants earned more than 70 percent more stamps than expected – and the airline saw a ROI of more than 500 percent. The takeaway: people like games.

Stand out from the crowd.

Your approach to your customer loyalty program should align with your overall marketing approach. Effective branding is about standing out, not blending it. Being memorable is key. To this end, keep in mind that loyalty programs are no longer a novelty. That means that yesterday’s strategies won’t work moving forward, so look for ways to rise above the noise, setting yourself apart from the cloying drone of countless other cookie-cutter programs.

188 The art and science of packaging

Don't let the old saying fool you. Your customers can - and do - judge a book by its cover.

January 2018
Noted By Carey Arvin

Laws of UX

'Laws of UX' is a collection of the maxims and principles that designers can consider when building user interfaces. It was created by Jon Yablonski, Design Lead at Vectorform, creator of the Web Field Manual, and contributor to Storytelling.design.
Read more

775 Boost email open rates by 152 percent

Use your customers’ behavior to your advantage.

April 2017
Noted By Michelle Detwiler

Shaming Your Users for Micro Conversions

An analysis of a creeping trend of user shaming for declining promotions and why it's wrong.
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June 2014
By Jeremy Girard

Straight Talk on SEO: The 15 Factors That Really Affect Your Site’s Search Engine Rankings

Don’t be led astray by the many myths and misconceptions that persist about what you must do to climb the search engine rankings. The truth is that while there are no silver bullets when it comes to SEO, there are proven practices that you can implement to reap solid long-term results.
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Straight Talk on SEO: The 15 Factors That Really Affect Your Site’s Search Engine Rankings

search-rankings-article If you own or manage a website, then you have undoubtedly been contacted with offers promising to “increase your website’s search engine rankings though search engine optimization.” I receive messages like this daily with promises that range from the surprising to the absurd. If you take these solicitations at their word, they make search engine optimization, or SEO, seem like a magic cure for your website marketing needs – but what are you really getting if you decide to hire a company to provide SEO services for your website? While there are many reputable firms that provide search engine marketing and optimization services, there are just as many scam artists who are looking to capitalize on business owners’ ignorance of what really goes into achieving improved search engine rankings. The truth is that the algorithms that determine search engine rankings are complex – and they are always changing. There is no “silver bullet” for improving rankings, no one thing you can do that will, by itself, get you the results you desire. Unfortunately, many companies present SEO this way – as a quick fix that offers guaranteed results. Like most things in business and in life, it sounds too good to be true because it is. In this article, we will explore 15 factors that affect how search engines rank your website so that the next time a company contacts you with an offer to “optimize your website for the search engines”, you can ask exactly which of these things they will be addressing as part of their plans and make better decisions for your website’s digital marketing initiatives.

1. Content

We will start with the most important factor when it comes to search engine rankings – content. This is what it is really all about. Search engines want to deliver the best results for searchers, results that will link to quality content that is relevant to that searcher’s query. More so than anything on this list, quality content is the key to improved search engine rankings. If you have quality content, your site has the best chance to be found by searchers and rank effectively in search engines. Most SEO companies that are looking to make a quick buck on your website will not address your content strategy, yet any true initiative to address rankings and overall success will begin by looking at your content to make sure that it is unique to your site, relevant to what your audience is looking for, and that you have a plan to produce this quality content on a regular basis.

2. Site structure

The way your website is built plays a role in how search engines will rank that site. Code that is clean and well-structured allows the search engines to crawl the site effectively and find what they are looking for. On the flip side, older sites whose code is convoluted and outdated will make it more difficult for search engines to crawl that site. Any time you make it more difficult for the search engines, you negatively impact your rankings.

3. On-Site optimization

This is what most SEO companies are referring to when they say that they will provide “optimization services” for that site. There are, indeed, a number of best practices that can be applied to the way specific web pages are built, but on their own, these on- site optimization techniques will only have a minimal effect – and if your website was built by a reputable agency that understands search engine best practices, then many of these on-site optimizations should already be in place. These techniques are important and should be part of a bigger overall plan if you hope to get the most out of the website, but you need more than on- site optimization for your site to truly be successful.

4. Inbound links

An incredibly important factor in rankings is links to your website from other sites. These links count as a “vote of confidence” for your site and search engines see those votes of confidence as proof that your site is quality – but not all links are created equal! A link to your site from a popular site that has a similar subject matter is a great link to have. The popularity and standing of that site, coupled with the fact that it shares subject matter to your own, make these links very valuable in the eyes of search engines. On the flip side, spammy links from bogus websites or “link farms” will not help you. In fact, those bogus links may harm your rankings! If a company contacts you promising 10,000 inbound links, run away quickly! What they are doing is “link building” using these link farm websites. While you may get short term results from these initiatives, you risk being penalized in the long term once the search engines discover where those links came from. What you want are quality links from reputable sites that like your content (yes, again it comes down to quality content).

5. Download speed

How quickly your website loads is another factor search engines have begun considering in their rankings algorithms. A fast-loading site is not only good for the user experience, but it really can improve rankings as well.

6. Longevity

This is a factor that is tough to control. The length of time your domain has been registered does play a role in rankings. A website that has been around for a while has been able to build up inbound links (see above), it has grown over time, and the search engines know that it is not a flash-in-the-pan site. Search engines like longevity, so if you registered your domain name years ago and have had a quality site up since that time, this will help you in your rankings now.

7. Frequency of updates

Search engines like sites that are attended to regularly. When those search engines index your site and see that it is constantly changing and being added to, they take that into account in a positive way for their ranking considerations.

8.  Mobile device support

More and more these days, mobile devices are playing a role in our websites’ success and search engine rankings are just another way these devices are making themselves known. Google’s best practices recommend using responsive web design to deliver websites to a variety of devices. Building a website that delivers an experience suited to the wide variety of devices available today ensures that when searchers find your site, whether they are on a desktop computer or a mobile phone, they get a quality experience. Search engines want sites that deliver these experiences and mobile or multi-device support is becoming an important factor in rankings.

9. Social media

We’ve already discussed the value of inbound links, so it is not surprising that links from social media and conversations being had on social media have also begun to impact search engine rankings. A strong presence on social media sites with links back to your website can drive traffic to your business and boost search engine rankings.

10. Advertising

Paid search engine advertising is one way you can get exposure to searchers quickly, while your site’s organic rankings improve over time. While Google has stated that they do not reward sites that advertise with their search engine by increasing their subsequent organic rankings, the reality is that paid ads can get you more exposure, which can lead to additional inbound links or social media mentions, which can then improve overall rankings. So whether or not you believe that Google does not reward companies that spend ad dollars with them, the process of taking out these ads can absolutely bring you traffic now and improve your organic placement over time.

11. Geographic location

Search engines have realized that many searches are local. If you are in Boston and you search for a plumber, you do not want listings for plumbers in Texas. Different searchers in different parts of the world will get different results for the queries they make, so the geographic location of your company will play into your rankings.

12. Browsing history

Similar to the fact that location will influence your site’s rankings, so will previous visits to your site. If a searcher has been to your site before, Google will often give that site preferential treatment for future searches, thinking that they may wish to visit the site again. The reality is that your overall browsing history plays a big part in the results you receive. Eli Pariser talked about these “filter bubbles” in a TED talk he gave in 2011.

13. Language

If your site caters to visitors who speak different languages, having pages presented in those languages can absolutely help if searches are being conducted in that language.

14. Uptime

Search engines cannot index and rank your site if it is down. Server uptime will play a role in overall rankings. If your server environment is unreliable and often down for maintenance, not only will you risk turning customers away if the site is offline for a time, but you also will eventually impact your rankings if search engine bots visit your site and find it unavailable.

15. Content

We end the article where we began, with content. While every item in this list will influence your search engine rankings, the reality is that it starts and ends with content. If you really want to increase search engine rankings, look to the factors and tips covered in this article, but be sure that above all else, your content is the best that it can be.

What about meta tags and keywords?

As mentioned earlier, search engine algorithms are always changing. Factors like Meta tags and “keyword density” no longer play a role in how search engines rank websites, yet there are still professed SEO specialists out there hawking these outdated methods. If the company you are speaking with about SEO services is pitching “keyword density” but is not addressing your content plans, or any of the other factors covered in this article, that is a sure sign that you should look for a different provider.

In summary

Quite a few factors contribute to search engine rankings, and while the ones presented in this article are all important, there are doubtlessly other things that we are not even yet aware of that search engines weigh when they rank websites for their search engine results. To truly improve your site’s rankings, you need to do more than add some keywords or tweak your pages’ code - you need to have a long term strategy that will address the items on this list today, while also being prepared for changes tomorrow.