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.

775 Boost email open rates by 152 percent

Use your customers’ behavior to your advantage.

641 Small changes, big impact: Listen to your customers

No one knows what your customers want from you better than your customers themselves, so why not simply ask them? We’ll explain how making a few phone calls can put you on the road to greater success in 2014, as our series on realistic resolutions fo

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.

June 2021
Noted By Joe Bauldoff

The Making and Maintenance of our Open Source Infrastructure

In this video, Nadia Eghbal, author of “Working in Public”, discusses the potential of open source developer communities, and looks for ways to reframe the significance of software stewardship in light of how the march of time constantly and inevitably works to pull these valuable resources back into entropy and obsolescence. Presented by the Long Now Foundation.
Watch on YouTube

March 2013
By Andy Beth Miller

Spring Cleaning: 7 Steps to Revitalize Your Website

Is your website doing all it can to bring you new customers and grow the community around your brand? If not, here’s how to get your online house in order.
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Spring Cleaning: 7 Steps to Revitalize Your Website

revitalize-article Every year it happens like clockwork: temperatures climb, the days get longer and winter grays give way to spring greens, bringing along with them the irresistible urge to clean house and embrace a fresh start. Why not keep that motivational momentum going and apply it to your business – and, more specifically, to your website – as well? After all, there’s no time like the present to sweep away the old and outdated and bring in fresh new ideas and technologies that will provide a welcoming environment where a thriving online community can take root and grow. Here are seven steps you should take today to ensure that your site is up-to-date, relevant and doing all it can to bring you new customers and grow the community around your brand:

1. Take it from the top.

First impressions can make or break a visitor’s decision to spend their time on your site or to move on to your competitor’s. As screens and attention spans shrink, so too does your window of opportunity to capture and hold visitors’ attention. Your home page must walk the line between offering a clean, uncluttered presentation and providing clear navigational cues. To gauge your site’s first-impression performance, give it the five-second test. Type your web address in your browser, let it load, then start the clock. After five seconds, close the window. What did you take away? What jumped out at you first, and what was most memorable? If the answer to that question is a jarring color or generic stock photo, it’s time for a change. Likewise, if nothing in particular stuck with you, then your home page may be lacking in focus. Even in that brief glance, you should be able to come away with a favorable impression of your company. You should also be able to tell right away what your company does and where you as a visitor should go next to accomplish the goal that brought you to the site. If you identify weaknesses in any of these areas, it might be time to revisit your site’s design and navigation to bring it up to modern standards. Remember, too, that you may be too familiar with your site to be truly objective, so if you can recruit a few friends, family members or colleagues to do the five-second test and give you their notes, all the better.

2. Check your small-screen savvy.

Today we live in a multi-device world populated by multi-device users. More and more, these users are spending less of their Web browsing time on their desktops and laptops and more on their handheld smartphones and tablets. If your website is even just a few years old, it may not be as easy to navigate on these smaller screens as it should be. To be sure, bring it up on your phone’s browser. Then borrow your friends’ phones and do the same. Then rinse and repeat on every modern mobile OS that you can get your hands on. If you can’t load it, browse through it, view the content and complete core functions effortlessly, then neither can your users. In order to ensure that your site is providing the best possible user experience regardless of which device they might be using to access it, you must make sure that your site’s interface is clean and clutter-free so that you make optimal use of the available real estate to allow the most important content to take center stage. Also pay close attention to details such as the amount of time it takes to load your site via mobile networks, the size and readability of typography, the level of contrast between the text and the background, the function of menus and the “pressability” of links, buttons and navigational tabs. If any of these are found lacking, it’s time to take proactive steps, whether it’s by building an app, developing a dedicated mobile site or migrating to a new responsive design platform.

3. Give it the touch test.

Along those same lines, knowing that many customers will come to your site from a smaller screen with a touch-based interface, it is vital to reassess whether or not your site allows visitors to touch and go. Again, log on to your site with a handheld and try it for yourself. Are your buttons and menus big, bold and easily seen? Are they readily accessible, with a buffer around them to allow a greater margin of error for fingers versus mouse-clickers? And most importantly, do they work? In the world of touch, roll-overs and hover states are non-existent, so replace buttons that require users to mouse over them to get a sense of action with style enhancements that draw attention to them as action elements. If a client is frustrated by your features and can't navigate easily, they will quickly move on and spend their dollars elsewhere. For a great example of a brand that has built a beautiful site utilizing readily accessible buttons and smarter small-screen features, check out Starbucks’s website on your favorite touchscreen device.

4. Flash? Fuggetaboutit.

Speaking of frustration, let's talk about Flash. The mobile Web is officially a hostile environment when it comes to Flash. Apple’s iOS does not – and probably never will – support Flash. Android does support Flash, but the performance of Flash content on Android devices is less than ideal. If you have Flash anywhere on your site, do your business – and your customers – a huge favor and get rid of it immediately. HTML5 and JavaScript are two smarter, more modern options that can replicate the same effects that once required Flash while providing a beautifully seamless experience for mobile and touch-based platforms.

5. Track your traffic.

Do you know where your site visitors are coming from? Do you know what keywords they’re using to find you? The answers to these questions and others like them can help you shape and sharpen your website to strengthen its performance. By utilizing a metrics toolset such as Google Analytics, you can not only determine how visitors are finding your site but also what’s keeping them there based on the amount of time they’re spending on your site, page by page. Armed with this data, take a fresh look at your site and see what you can do to give your visitors more of what they’re looking for. Is there one particular keyword set that drives the majority of your site traffic? If so, then make sure everything that pertains to those keywords is front and center. Is there a particular type of content on your site that gets the most views? If so, add more around that subject matter.

6. Keep it fresh.

Does your website reek of staleness? When was the last time you published a blog post? Or added new client testimonials? Or updated your portfolio or case studies? If your website has stagnated, it will be immediately obvious to visitors. Today’s Web surfers don’t want to spend time in a dead space that’s void of activity. They demand access to the latest information and intelligence, so make sure that your website is not a graveyard where ideas and conversation go to die.

7. Focus on the community connection.

Bringing new visitors to your site is only half the battle; your ultimate goal is to keep them coming back again and again. To accomplish this, your site must be more than just a brochure on glass. It must provide a home base where the members of your tribe can come to be informed and to share ideas and information. To this end, it must offer content that’s relevant to the questions, concerns, hassles and fears that your clients face every day. It should also offer a way for them to contribute and to interact with other members of the tribe. This can be as simple as giving visitors the ability to leave comments on your blog or publish reviews of your products or services. However, it can also be as complex as a community ecosystem where people can share the things matter to them in ways that are meaningful to them. For example, NASCAR driver Ryan Newman’s Fan Club site is built around keeping its members engaged and active by giving them many different ways to share and interact. They can post their own videos, build photo albums, join the conversation on community message boards and even chat with other members in real time. Think about ways you can enhance your website in order to serve your community, even if they don’t directly serve your brand and your business. By providing an arena where these types of exchanges can take place, in the long run, you’ll benefit immeasurably from constant exposure and engagement.
November 2012
By Jeremy Girard

Website Design for a Multi-Device World

From smartphones to tablets to laptops and desktops, your customers move seamlessly from one device to another in the course of any given day. Can your website keep up?
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Website Design for a Multi-Device World


The array of devices through which people interact with online content is larger and more diverse today than ever. To underscore the point, try this little exercise – take a look around your house and find every device you own that can access the Web. For me, the list looks like this:

  • Desktop computer
  • Laptop computer
  • Netbook computer
  • iPod touch (x2, each a different generation)
  • iPad
  • Kindle (x2, each a different version)
  • Android phone (HTC EVO)
  • Gaming system (wii)

Each of these devices has a different screen size, and the experience of accessing web content is different on each.

That’s why, if you want to ensure that your website will provide an experience that truly engages your audience, it must be designed specifically for this multi-device world in which we all live today.

The multi-device user

The multi-device world is populated by multi-device users. While a staggering variety of devices are, indeed, being used to access web content today, it’s also important to remember that the same user is often using multiple different devices to access your website – and they expect that site to work well regardless of which device they happen to be using at the time.

To illustrate this point, let’s consider the scenario of an average everyday activity that occurs on the Web: mom planning the family vacation.

As she starts her day, she does a quick search on her iPhone and starts to peruse a few sites that strike her interest as she enjoys her morning coffee. Later she takes advantage of her lunch break to continue her research. She visits many of the same websites as she did before, this time reading more and delving deeper each one now that she’s seated comfortably in her chair behind her desk and has more screen real estate to work with. That evening she shares her findings with the family, flipping between sites on her iPad as they unwind on the couch. In each instance, she visits many of the same sites, and she expects them to perform just as well no matter which device she has in front of her.

More than just mobile phones

You have likely been introduced to the concept of “mobile websites” and have been told that your company needs one, but as the scenario above illustrates, the multi-device landscape encompasses much more than just large desktop monitors and small handheld phones. There are many devices and screen sizes in between, and your website must be equipped to work well on all of them. That’s why a separate “mobile-only” site is not the best way to serve the needs of the multi-device user.

A mobile-only solution relies on technology that detects when your website is being accessed via mobile phone and redirects the user to a completely separate version of your site – one designed specifically for the typical screen size of a smartphone. These mobile websites often feature less content and fewer features in order to minimize both navigational complexity and load time.

The problem with the mobile-only approach is that it only addresses the needs of one specific type of device. Large desktop computers get the “normal” browsing experience while mobile phones get a smaller, more streamlined version.

But what about the multitude of devices that fall between these two extremes? How do we serve them effectively?

Going responsive

There are a number of deficiencies with a mobile-only approach, but the inability to serve today’s broad array of devices is the most detrimental.

If the mobile version of your website offers less content and fewer features than your desktop site, you run the risk that a user will be looking for content that you have decided to eliminate from your slimmed-down mobile site. This is a problem, because when a user comes to your site looking for something specific and they can’t find it, their natural response is to go looking for it somewhere else – which usually means your competitor’s site.

After all the effort your put into attracting users to your website, anything that drives them away – like a user experience that is not optimized for the device they are using – runs counterproductive to your goals. So how can you embrace this multi-device world and ensure that your website can succeed in it? It’s time to go responsive.

What is responsive web design?

Responsive web design is an approach that has gained much favor and momentum in the web industry in the past few years – in part because it offers a solution to many of the limitations that mobile-only websites face.

A responsive website is one that intelligently rearranges its layout based on the size of the user’s screen. For instance, let’s say your site normally presents its content in three columns. The smaller a screen gets in size, the more problematic this layout can become, as the columns become so narrow that their content is unreadable and their buttons are un-pressable.

With responsive design, when a visitor is using a tablet in portrait mode or a laptop with a very small screen, those three columns reflow into a two-column layout that is better suited to the dimensions of those screens. For handheld phones, the design shifts to a single column of content with text and links that are large enough to be easily read and touched even on a very small screen. In this way, you have one website that “responds” to the multi-device user, adjusting its layout based on the particular device they are using – hence the name responsive design.


The benefits of responsive design

Efficient maintenance

It’s hard enough to keep one website updated with timely, relevant content; updating content across multiple websites is even more challenging.

When you go the mobile-only route, you end up with multiple websites to maintain. With a responsive approach, however, you have only a single website to manage. This makes it easier to keep your content consistent, because anytime you make a change to your website, that change is seen by all visitors regardless of the device they are using.

Zero gaps

As we saw earlier, supporting the multi-device user means being able to accommodate more than just large desktop screens and small handheld devices.

A responsive web design approach does indeed address these two extremes, but it also fills all the gaps in between, adapting its layout to perform seamlessly on the widest range of screen sizes and devices possible. This is especially helpful for those users that jump from device to device, as described earlier, because the site will adjust to their needs and present them with a consistently good experience regardless of their choice of device.


Because a responsive website design will reflow based on the screen being used to access it, your website will be equipped to support not only those devices that are popular today, but also those that we don’t even know about yet.

As new devices are released – some of which will undoubtedly also introduce new screen sizes or resolutions to the market – you can rest assured that your responsive site will do its best to present an optimal experience by “responding” to whatever type of screen it might be presented with.

Go big

While much attention is paid to how your website will handle smaller screens such as those on smartphones, there is another end of the spectrum to consider: large devices.

A responsive website can not only reflow its layout to present an optimal experience for small screens, but it can also do the same for very large screens. Large screens are often neglected in website design because even sites that are engineered for desktop monitors are not built to suit many of today’s widescreen displays. However, a responsive approach can allow your site to stretch its legs a bit in order to better fit bigger screens, making use of the additional space to better communicate your organization’s message.

Cost effectiveness

Since responsive design means you need only a single website, deploying this approach can often be much more cost effective than developing separate websites for different devices. This cost effectiveness is compounded further over time as you save the added expense of having to update, maintain and host separate sites for desktops, mobile phones, tablets, etc.

The challenges of responsive design

While there are a number of advantages to responsive design, there are a few challenges as well.

First, responsive design is not a feature that you can simply tack on to your existing website. To be done right, a responsive approach requires you to redesign and redevelop your site from the ground up so that responsive logic can be built into every aspect.

Another challenge of responsive design is that, if not done properly, it can result in loss of performance for users on devices where bandwidth is a concern. Often the small-screen version of a responsive design does away with some of the elements that exist solely for aesthetic purposes (large background images, for example). When such elements are “turned off” for smaller devices, if not configured properly, they might still be sent to the device anyway, meaning those devices are required to download excessive and completely unnecessary data that negatively impacts performance. To avoid this pitfall, make sure you’re working with a team that’s experienced in responsive design and has the technical expertise necessary to ensure that your site tailors both its layout and performance to deliver an optimal experience for any device.

Embracing the multi-device world

Traffic to websites from devices other than desktop computers has risen dramatically in the past few years, and industry analysts predict that number will continue to soar in the coming years. Looking at the hundreds of websites that I help maintain and manage, I am seeing an average of about 30 to 35 percent of all traffic coming from mobile devices of one kind or another and even a few sites where mobile traffic is nearing 50 percent.

As we head toward a future where more than half of our website traffic will come from visitors not using a traditional desktop computer, now is the time to ensure that your website is armed to compete effectively in a multi-device world.