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Drupal for Business

At Duo, we build connections.

Transforming Legal Websites with Drupal

By Michael Silverman on Sep 25, 2018 9:38:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 25, 2018 9:38:00 AM

Think about these four words for a minute:
  • Transformation.
  • Growth.
  • Innovation.
  • Opportunity.
What do those words mean to you?  To me, they represent the infinite possibilities that come with a well-designed website. If a site or digital platform is built to match the needs of its company, the result can be transformational. It can lead to a growth in a customer base or overall growth in an organization. It can be innovative in how it presents content. And the opportunities, well, they are limitless.
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Financial Benefit of Moving to Drupal 8

By Tim Cruse on Sep 21, 2018 9:34:58 AM

By Tim Cruse on Sep 21, 2018 9:34:58 AM

There are a lot of reasons why I love working in sales at Duo, where I get to tell clients — and potential clients — about the benefits of Drupal. I’ll be honest, though, there are definitely some challenges that come with the territory. Arguably the biggest obstacle I face is convincing a potential client why it’s worth spending thousands upon thousands of dollars to build a new website or digital platform with Drupal.

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Duo Recognized with Four WebAwards

By Michael Silverman on Sep 14, 2018 7:24:56 AM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 14, 2018 7:24:56 AM

I didn’t get into this business to win awards.

In the early days here at Duo Consulting, I stressed to our team that we should focus on results, not recognition. That is a mantra I’ve maintained to this day.

That being said, if we are able to create a product that pleases our client and gets industry-wide recognition, I certainly won’t complain. That is why I’m proud to share that Duo was recognized with four different honors in the 2018 WebAward Competition.

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Future-Proofing Your Content with Drupal 8

By Tim Cruse on Sep 4, 2018 10:15:00 AM

By Tim Cruse on Sep 4, 2018 10:15:00 AM

I’ve had a number of conversations with potential clients about upgrading their websites to Drupal 8, and an interesting trend has been popping up. On several occasions, I’ve heard that the companies I’m speaking with are hesitant to go through an upgrade because of the costs that come with it.

I understand that reservation, particularly because an upgrade to Drupal 8 requires a full-on redesign to fully maximize the platform’s potential. That being said, I think the advantages certainly outweigh the cost

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The Art of Sketchboarding

By Tara Ortiz on Aug 27, 2018 10:52:00 AM

By Tara Ortiz on Aug 27, 2018 10:52:00 AM

I’ve spent the past 14 years as a designer. I got my degree in graphic design, and I’ve done everything front print design to product packaging to user experience (UX) design. Today I am a senior designer who specializes in user interfaces — what users see and interact with when they use a web product.

I’ve been asked before what makes a good user interface, and the answer really depends on the client. What are their goals? What do they want their user to do? Inherently, the follow up questions I hear are: Well, what if they don’t know what their goals are? How do you help them figure it out? My answer is “Sketchboarding.”

Topics: Design Services
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8 reasons to upgrade to Drupal 8

By Tim Cruse on Aug 20, 2018 9:44:08 AM

By Tim Cruse on Aug 20, 2018 9:44:08 AM

I recently had a meeting with a client who has operated their website on Drupal 7 for the past few years, and they wanted to know why they should upgrade their site from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8. As I worked on answering their question, it became clear to me that there are 8 distinct reasons why it makes sense for businesses and organizations to make the leap from D7 to D8.

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Free UX Site Review at the Digital Summit Chicago

By Tim Cruse on Aug 8, 2018 12:57:49 PM

By Tim Cruse on Aug 8, 2018 12:57:49 PM

Last year, Duo CEO Michael Silverman attended The Digital Summit here in Chicago. I still remember him coming back to the office and telling the team that it was an event we should get involved with.

Fast forward to this year, and Duo is proud to be a sponsor of what is billed as “The Definitive Digital Marketing Gathering.”

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5 Video Marketing Strategy Tips

By Ben Silverman on Jul 31, 2018 9:40:26 AM

By Ben Silverman on Jul 31, 2018 9:40:26 AM

In 2016, Facebook reported that every day, users watch more than 100 million hours of video on the social platform every day.

Let me repeat that: 100 million hours every day!

By 2019, it’s been predicted that 80% of online traffic will come from video.

If videos are not a part of your digital marketing strategy, it may be time to revisit your strategy. Videos are a powerful form of communication today, and they can serve as a truly compelling and engaging way to tell your brand story.

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Microsoft, GitHub and the Power of Community

By Rich Lawson on Jul 25, 2018 7:34:46 AM

By Rich Lawson on Jul 25, 2018 7:34:46 AM

When it comes to open-source platforms, I’ve always felt that one of the biggest assets is the community that comes with the platform. The ability to have passionate, dedicated individuals working together to further the development of a project — be it an individual module or a larger piece of technology — has always been inspiring to me.

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Drupal Must-Have Modules: Search API

By Mike Lewis on Jul 10, 2018 8:35:44 AM

By Mike Lewis on Jul 10, 2018 8:35:44 AM

What does the Search API module do?

The Search API module allows a site administrator to create flexible, detailed, robust search indexes that more semantically define what content is. It allows you to index your content and customize it in a way that makes sure everything appears when and where it is supposed to. It ensures that everything you want to appear in a search actually appears, making for a more effective search.

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Flexible Drupal Design for Nontechnical Designers

By Tim Cruse on Jun 27, 2018 10:10:00 AM

By Tim Cruse on Jun 27, 2018 10:10:00 AM

What’s your roadmap?

That’s the question I ask any potential client I speak with. What’s your plan for creating content on your website? What path are you going to take to migrate from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8?

Knowing those answers helps me understand how Duo can best help them with their website needs. Inevitably, though, if they are looking for a redesign or a rebuild, they are going to hear me talk about Flex pages.

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Adding Commerce to the Drupal CMS

By Michael Silverman on Jun 18, 2018 2:01:59 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 18, 2018 2:01:59 PM

When you think about digital technology today, it’s easy to get inspired. Think of everything that you can do technologically today that you couldn’t do 10 years ago, or maybe even two years ago.

We have so much tech around us, it’s also easy to get overwhelmed.

This past Wednesday, I felt both feelings within a few hours of one another.

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Accessibility Testing - Humans Still Needed

By Molly Lee on Jun 12, 2018 1:19:00 PM

By Molly Lee on Jun 12, 2018 1:19:00 PM

Like so many things today, the world of website accessibility testing is becoming automated. There are tools and internet browser extensions now available that make it possible to perform tests in minutes instead of the hours — if not days — that used to be required for completion.

Topics: Design Strategy
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Changing Drupal’s (Material) Admin Experience

By Michael Girgis on Jun 1, 2018 10:07:00 AM

By Michael Girgis on Jun 1, 2018 10:07:00 AM

There are so many good things that we’ve heard about Drupal from clients over the years, and we truly think it is the most powerful content management system (CMS) available today. With all of that being said, though, there has always been one consistent complaint.

The back-end user experience is not as good as it could be.

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Drupal vs Wordpress for Marketers in 2018

By Michael Silverman on May 14, 2018 10:06:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 14, 2018 10:06:00 AM

Last month, most of our Duo team traveled to Nashville for DrupalCon 2018. The annual event brought more than 3,000 Drupal developers and advocates together to discuss the latest changes and trends with the platform. Every time I’ve attended DrupalCon, I’ve left energized about the platform’s future and inspired to bring that excitement to our clients. This year was no different.

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Drupal Paragraphs Module & Flex Pages

By Mike Lewis on May 8, 2018 9:08:00 AM

By Mike Lewis on May 8, 2018 9:08:00 AM

One of Drupal’s greatest strengths is its variety of modules that help users and developers to customize the platform to their specific needs. As part of an ongoing series, we asked Duo team members to spotlight one module they think is a must-have for any Drupal site.

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Using Drupal and JavaScript for Accessibility

By Michael Girgis on May 1, 2018 8:35:58 AM

By Michael Girgis on May 1, 2018 8:35:58 AM

JavaScript and screen readers have an interesting relationship. For years, there has been a perceived conflict between the programming language and the tools used to make websites more accessible.

That perceived conflict is just that — perceived. In reality, there’s no reason why the two can’t work together to make a more powerful product for users to engage with.

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Drupalgeddon 2.0 & Drupal Security

By Rich Lawson on Apr 24, 2018 11:08:21 AM

By Rich Lawson on Apr 24, 2018 11:08:21 AM

A little more than one month ago, the Drupal Security team alerted the Drupal community that a necessary security update was on its way to fix a major vulnerability that put more than one million Drupal-run websites at risk.

Dubbed Drupalgeddon 2.0 for its potential severity, the patch was designed for Drupal Core and developed to put a stop to the bug before it could inflict much damage.

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Deciding between Drupal and WordPress

By Tim Cruse on Apr 17, 2018 8:30:00 AM

By Tim Cruse on Apr 17, 2018 8:30:00 AM

Congratulations! Your business wants a new website, and you’ve been put in charge with determining what content management system (CMS) you should go with: WordPress or Drupal.


Let the fun begin.

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4 Things to do before starting a Drupal Project

By Molly Lee on Apr 16, 2018 2:58:55 PM

By Molly Lee on Apr 16, 2018 2:58:55 PM

Duo recently started working with an up-and-coming startup to determine a set of requirements for the company’s new mobile app. Based off of phone calls with the startup team, there were a lot of elements that they considered to be important to the project, but due to time and scope limitations, the team wanted us to determine what the minimum viable product was.

Topics: Design Strategy
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5 Reasons to Hire a Drupal Agency

By Michael Silverman on Apr 9, 2018 10:47:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 9, 2018 10:47:00 AM

As you begin a new website project — be it redesigning an existing site or creating a new hub for content from scratch — there are a number of questions for you to consider. What do you want the site to look like? How is your content going to be organized? What platform are you going to use for your content management system?

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Becoming a Certified Drupal Developer

By Mike Lewis on Apr 2, 2018 10:47:00 AM

By Mike Lewis on Apr 2, 2018 10:47:00 AM

When I first began tinkering around with Drupal about 10 years ago, I didn’t know what I was doing.

My employer at the time wanted us to start using Drupal as a different way for us to provide our customers with websites built by a strong development platform. So, I grabbed it and started to run.

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Drupal and GDPR

By Rich Lawson on Mar 19, 2018 8:52:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Mar 19, 2018 8:52:00 AM

There are four letters that have been on the minds of web developers recently.

GDPR. 

GDPR stands for General Data Protection Regulation, which are new regulations set to debut on May 25, 2018, that will limit what personal information websites

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Service over Technology

By Tim Cruse on Mar 13, 2018 8:51:57 AM

By Tim Cruse on Mar 13, 2018 8:51:57 AM

As a sales manager here at Duo, I am in the fortunate position to talk with a lot of potential clients. During those conversations, the question I get most frequently - and the one that frankly I like answering the most - is why a potential client should choose Duo instead of another agency.

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Drupal, Salesforce and Community

By Luke Zagata on Feb 23, 2018 8:36:56 AM

By Luke Zagata on Feb 23, 2018 8:36:56 AM

 

On this blog, we've frequently talked about one of Drupal's biggest strengths being its dedicated community of developers spread around the world. These developers are constantly making updates to modules and managing the security of the open-source software so that Drupal-site owners don't have to worry about the safety and functionality of their website.

But what does that process actually look like?

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Get a Head Start on your Drupal Website

By Michael Silverman on Feb 7, 2018 3:13:15 PM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 7, 2018 3:13:15 PM

Here at Duo, we’ve helped build hundreds of websites for our clients using Drupal. Along the way, we’ve seen some common features that just about any type of business website requires.

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Four Secrets to Mobile Accessibility

By Molly Lee on Jan 29, 2018 11:45:07 AM

By Molly Lee on Jan 29, 2018 11:45:07 AM

Earlier this month, I attended a meetup with other designers, developers and user experience (UX) specialists from across the Chicago area. The session was about building quality accessibility practices into your project processes, and it was fascinating.

The event speakers were a front-end software engineer and a quality assurance engineer, and they each spoke about how addressing accessibility plays a role in their day-to-day responsibilities. 

Topics: Design Strategy
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Why Drupal Works Best for Tech Firms

By Tim Cruse on Jan 23, 2018 10:10:00 AM

By Tim Cruse on Jan 23, 2018 10:10:00 AM

Innovative is not usually a word that comes to mind when you think of pet insurance, but that's exactly the word I use to describe Figo, a pet insurance company that approached us a few months back. Figo promotes itself as the first cloud-based pet insurance company - it's Pet Cloud and mobile app make managing your pet's life easier than ever before.

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Showcasing your Expertise with Drupal

By Tim Thurn on Jan 22, 2018 12:20:00 PM

By Tim Thurn on Jan 22, 2018 12:20:00 PM

One of the partners at Bessemer Venture Partners (BVP), focuses on venture capital investments in the cloud-computing and Internet sectors. He is consistently ranked as one of the top global investors across all industry sectors.

He currently helps BVP invest in companies like DocuSign — the world’s largest electronic signature platform — and Simply Measured — which developed a variety of social media reporting tools.

Topics: Design Services
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Behind-the-scenes Look at Drupal 8 Initiatives

By Rich Lawson on Jan 2, 2018 9:11:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Jan 2, 2018 9:11:00 AM

Ask anyone who has worked in the digital space, and they’ll tell you that technology moves quickly. Changes take place. Updates happen. It’s imperative to stay on top of the latest news and information about the technology you’re involved with, otherwise you’ll quickly fall behind, and your reputation will suffer.

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Why Drupal Makes Sense for Nonprofits

By Michael Silverman on Dec 27, 2017 4:31:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 27, 2017 4:31:00 PM

Last year, we took on a fascinating project to overhaul the Cook County government website. We faced a number of interesting challenges along the way, from how to organize the vast array of bureaus, agencies and departments to the reality of structuring content for three distinct and different audiences.

Topics: Design Services
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Botanic Garden Drupal Ecommerce Integration

By Michael Silverman on Dec 15, 2017 10:34:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 15, 2017 10:34:00 AM

At Duo, we love having clients come to us before embarking on a major project and saying they want to collaborate with us from day one all the way until launch date, and hopefully beyond. But sometimes, we have clients come to us — well, for lack of a better way of saying it — in need of rescue. They started a project with one firm and for one reason or another, they weren’t satisfied with the firm or the final product.

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The Drupal Digital Experience Stack

By Michael Silverman on Dec 8, 2017 2:21:25 PM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 8, 2017 2:21:25 PM

I read two fascinating industry reports over the Thanksgiving break that I haven’t been able to stop thinking about. The first piece was “The Forrester Wave: Digital Experience Platforms, Q3 2017,” and the second was Gartner’s “Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management.”

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Facts and Myths about Decoupling Drupal

By Michael Girgis on Nov 28, 2017 9:42:00 AM

By Michael Girgis on Nov 28, 2017 9:42:00 AM

One of our past clients recently came to us with a question. Their website had been running on Drupal for several years, and they felt relatively knowledgeable about the platform and the lingo that comes with it.

Earlier that day, the client heard a term they didn’t recognize: decoupling. The client heard that decoupling was quickly becoming one of the “it” things to do with Drupal, and they wondered if they should pursue it to stay current with the latest trend.

Let’s answer the obvious question first: What is decoupling?

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Why Law Firms Love Drupal

By Tim Thurn on Nov 21, 2017 10:10:00 AM

By Tim Thurn on Nov 21, 2017 10:10:00 AM

Historically, law firms have faced an interesting dilemma when it comes to their websites.

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‘Alexa, What are Top Web Design Trends for 2018?’

By Molly Lee on Nov 13, 2017 9:01:33 AM

By Molly Lee on Nov 13, 2017 9:01:33 AM

Halloween is over, Thanksgiving is just two weeks away, and before we know it, it’s going to be 2018. With that in mind, I wanted to go ahead and talk about five user experience and web design trends I’m going to be keeping my eye on in the new year.

Photo by Annie Spratt

Topics: Design Strategy
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Chicago Botanic Garden Tags Duo for Critical Upgrade

By Michael Silverman on Nov 2, 2017 9:55:26 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 2, 2017 9:55:26 AM

The wind was cold, but the energy was infectious.

That is how a colleague recently began his retelling of his Saturday night activities. He and his family went to the Chicago Botanic Garden on the weekend before Halloween, and they were in for a treat. As the night sky grew dark, more than 1,000 carved pumpkins lit up the Garden as part of the second annual Night of 1,000 Jack-o'-Lanterns.

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The Importance of Structure in a Website Redesign

By Molly Lee on Oct 31, 2017 10:14:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Oct 31, 2017 10:14:00 AM

When you think about a brand getting a new website, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? For most people, I think the answer would be a site with a new appearance. While that’s obviously an important component of any website development or redesign project, I think there’s something else that should be thought about before considering how a site looks.

Topics: Design Strategy
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Loyola Medicine – Making Search Work

By Michael Silverman on Oct 30, 2017 2:28:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Oct 30, 2017 2:28:00 PM

One of the beauties — and challenges — of websites is that they’re never truly done. Think about it. Sure, you can go through a redesign and overhaul the look and feel of your site, but is it ever done? There are always new components to add or strategies you can test. When it comes to your site and its user experience, you always want to make sure it’s as good as can be.

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5 Drupal Modules for your Business

By Luke Zagata on Oct 19, 2017 8:40:00 AM

By Luke Zagata on Oct 19, 2017 8:40:00 AM

As a mid-market business owner, your website is crucial to your success of failure. And if your website runs on Drupal, it can just as easily help support your goals and move your business forward as it can be a total nightmare that stalls your growth altogether.

The trick is knowing what you need on your website.

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How to Make Flexible Landing Pages in Drupal

By Rich Lawson on Oct 12, 2017 1:34:00 PM

By Rich Lawson on Oct 12, 2017 1:34:00 PM

Drupal 8 is great for marketers. We’ve talked about a number of the platform’s benefits on this blog before, such as its in-place editing, BigPipe technology and API-driven structure, just to name a few. One thing we haven’t touched on much is one of the most important tools in a marketer’s arsenal: the landing page.

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5 Ways to Bring Your Brand’s Values Online

By Molly Lee on Oct 9, 2017 11:00:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Oct 9, 2017 11:00:00 AM

I want to start this post off with a quick quiz (don’t worry, it’s not hard, and you won’t be graded).

Think about where you work. What does your business or organization value? What is most important to its leaders?

OK, that wasn’t so hard, right? Now think about (or look at) your organization’s website. Where are those values explained?

Topics: Design Strategy
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10 Ways to Improve your Website CMS Project

By Michael Silverman on Oct 2, 2017 6:00:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Oct 2, 2017 6:00:00 PM

When you work on building and restructuring hundreds of websites and content management systems (CMS) for businesses and organizations, you start to see themes emerge — both good and bad. I want to focus on the not so good trends we’ve encountered over the years and how you can learn from them so you don’t make the same mistakes.

Topics: Design Strategy
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5 Reasons to Love Drupal

By Rich Lawson on Oct 2, 2017 3:06:26 PM

By Rich Lawson on Oct 2, 2017 3:06:26 PM

I’ve been an avid supporter of Drupal for the past nine years. The platform provides users with the most customization opportunities and best ability to integrate with other technologies compared to any other web platform out there.

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The Episcopal Church Site Refresh

By Michael Silverman on Sep 28, 2017 9:05:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 28, 2017 9:05:00 AM

Duo has been fortunate to work with the Episcopal Church for several years on a variety of projects relating to the church’s website. During our initial engagement, stakeholders from the church were not satisfied with their website, and they thought a Drupal CMS was a better platform to showcase their online presence than what they previously used.

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Drupal 8.4 is On the Way!

By Rich Lawson on Sep 18, 2017 11:13:24 AM

By Rich Lawson on Sep 18, 2017 11:13:24 AM

To the uninformed, the development cycle of new Drupal versions can seem complex and quite confusing.

Before a major version of Drupal core is released, a collection of alpha releases, beta releases and release candidates are first made available to developers. 

These releases allow people knowledgeable with the backend of Drupal to test new features

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Engaging Stakeholders for Smooth Discovery

By Molly Lee on Sep 12, 2017 9:00:05 AM

By Molly Lee on Sep 12, 2017 9:00:05 AM

When we build a new website or redesign an existing site, the process can be broken down into three basic phases: discovery, design and development.

Without question, the most important of these sections is the first. It is in discovery that we learn the exact details of what our client is looking for. Beyond that, we meet key team members and learn roles and responsibilities as they relate to the website.

Topics: Design Services
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3 Ways to Generate More Leads from your Website

By Michael Silverman on Sep 6, 2017 10:55:17 AM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 6, 2017 10:55:17 AM

A long-time friend gave me a call yesterday to complain about his non-profit’s website. Complain may be a little harsh. He expressed his discontent with the site.

The non-profit he works at is respectable in size, but he insisted the organization needed a new website because not enough people were submitting contact information to learn more about the non-profit.

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12 Questions Before Redesigning Your Website

By Michael Silverman on Aug 30, 2017 10:14:24 AM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 30, 2017 10:14:24 AM

When it comes to redesigning your website, the idea can be daunting. From dozens of CMS options to hundreds of potential firms to choose from and potentially thousands of dollars to spend, many people talk themselves out a redesign before the process even gets started.

The idea — and the process — doesn’t have to be scary or risky if your follow a process and set clear goals.

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Using Drupal to Organize Higher Ed Content

By Molly Lee on Aug 28, 2017 9:30:09 AM

By Molly Lee on Aug 28, 2017 9:30:09 AM

I’ve worked on several Drupal updates and redesigns for university websites since I’ve worked at Duo, and the one thing that still surprises me is the level of intricacy needed for the sites. I don’t necessarily mean that the sites are complex, but rather, the planning and organizing of content is more complex than your normal consumer-based site.

Topics: Design Strategy
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A Commitment to our Clients

By Michael Silverman on Aug 22, 2017 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 22, 2017 8:00:00 AM

Drupal founder Dries Buytaert recently shared the exciting news that Acquia (Drupal) was named a leader in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management.This is the fourth straight year Acquia received this recognition, solidifying its place with Adobe and Sitecore as the premier vendors in in Gartner’s report.

The reality is you can pretty much do the same things on the Adobe, Sitecore or Drupal platforms.

Topics: Services
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6 Steps to Drupal 8

By Michael Silverman on Aug 10, 2017 8:42:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 10, 2017 8:42:00 AM

I had an interesting conversation with a client recently about updating his business’ website to Drupal 8. The company’s site is on Drupal 7, and like many Drupal users, he felt it best to wait a while before upgrading. After all, he figured, there probably were some kinks in the new version and it’d be best to let those get worked out before he and his business made the change.

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5 Keys to Project Success

By Kelly Balesteri on Aug 4, 2017 10:15:00 AM

By Kelly Balesteri on Aug 4, 2017 10:15:00 AM

Who owns the website project management process? Is that a trick question?

Well, yes, but yes with an asterisk.

Duo usually "owns" the project process, but you also need an internal owner, single point of contact,

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Creating a Universal Accessible Experience

By Molly Lee on Aug 4, 2017 9:39:13 AM

By Molly Lee on Aug 4, 2017 9:39:13 AM

I had a conversation recently with a woman in a wheelchair, and I haven’t been able to get what she said out of my head. We were at a conference, and she was talking about challenges she faces that most people may never think about.

The story she told was about that morning. She and a few of her colleagues were approaching the building that housed the conference, but as they got to the front door, she realized there was no handicapped access.

Topics: Design Services
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6 Reasons to use Drupal vs Wordpress

By Michael Silverman on Jul 31, 2017 6:05:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 31, 2017 6:05:00 AM

It's no secret that WordPress is the most-used content management system (CMS) in the world. The CMS is considered easier to use than a platform like Drupal, and when it comes to building a simple marketing website with a few pages and a blog, WordPress definitely is the market leader.
Drupal, on the other hand, is considered more complex.

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Managing Effective Drupal Websites

By Rich Lawson on Jul 24, 2017 10:10:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Jul 24, 2017 10:10:00 AM

I’ve spent more than 20 years in the web development and technology space, and in that time, I’ve learned a lot. I’ve seen new platforms appear and then their usage dwindle away to practically nothing.

A lot has changed over the course of my career, but not everything. Some things that were true 10 years ago, or even 20 years ago, are still true today.
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Drupal Security Kit

By Luke Zagata on Jul 18, 2017 9:11:00 AM

By Luke Zagata on Jul 18, 2017 9:11:00 AM

There is a common misconception about open-source software and security.
The thought is that because the software’s code is out in the open, it makes it less secure than proprietary software and more vulnerable to hackers. 

The reality, though, is completely opposite.

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A First Look at Developing in Pantheon

By Michael Girgis on Jul 14, 2017 10:10:00 AM

By Michael Girgis on Jul 14, 2017 10:10:00 AM

One of the services we offer our clients is to coordinate and manage the hosting of their websites. We’ve experimented with a number of different hosting options over the years, and our latest experiment has been with Pantheon.

Pantheon is one of the biggest providers of Drupal hosting (they also host WordPress sites), and so far, we’ve been really happy with the experience.

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4 Must-Have Drupal Spam Prevention Modules

By Luke Zagata on Jun 20, 2017 8:11:00 AM

By Luke Zagata on Jun 20, 2017 8:11:00 AM

Does this scenario sound familiar? You go to fill out a form online and submit information about yourself, but before you can actually hit “submit,” you have to decode a series of blurry letters.

Did you know those blurry letters have an actual name? They are called a CAPTCHA.

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Open Marketing with Drupal

By Michael Silverman on Jun 12, 2017 9:42:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 12, 2017 9:42:00 AM

Joe Pulizzi calls himself a content marketing evangelist, but I like to think of him as the godfather of content marketing.

Pulizzi is the founder of the Content Marketing Institute, which, among other impressive details, organizes Content Marketing World, “the largest in-person content marketing event in the world.” Pulizzi has been thinking about content marketing for years — 16 in fact. He first used the term “content marketing” in 2001,

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OpenInbound - Better than HubSpot & Drupal?

By Rich Lawson on May 29, 2017 8:11:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on May 29, 2017 8:11:00 AM

Every time I attend DrupalCon North America, I’m impressed by the creative work that is showcased. This year was no different.

Last month several colleagues and I descended on Baltimore, where we participated in the five-day event, the largest Drupal event in the world. As informative and inspiring as the sessions are, I’ve found that the best value comes from the people you meet and the new connections you’re able to make.

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Drupal for Law Firms Big and Small

By Tim Thurn on May 23, 2017 9:44:57 AM

By Tim Thurn on May 23, 2017 9:44:57 AM

Over the years, it’s been fascinating to watch as various industries discover the power of Drupal. It’s not that Drupal-designed websites only work for certain kinds of organizations and not for others. Far from it, in fact. Drupal’s flexibility and customization opportunities make it a great option for any industry.

At Duo, we’ve recently seen piqued interest in Drupal from law firms — both large and small. We’ve worked with law firms for more than 15 years, but it seems there is an increased awareness about Drupal and a desire to leverage all that Drupal 8 has to offer.
We’ve worked with firms with hundreds of lawyers and firms with as few as three lawyers.
Topics: Design Services
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4 More Must-Have Drupal SEO Modules

By Luke Zagata on May 16, 2017 12:00:00 AM

By Luke Zagata on May 16, 2017 12:00:00 AM

Recently I wrote about four must-have modules to ensure your Drupal website’s search engine optimization (SEO) is as strong as it can be. Well, the reality is those four modules will get you to a good spot in regards to SEO. If you want to be in a great spot, though, consider adding these four modules to your site.

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Decoupling Drupal

By Ryan Beach on May 9, 2017 8:24:00 AM

By Ryan Beach on May 9, 2017 8:24:00 AM

Several of my colleagues and I attended DrupalCon 2017 in Baltimore last month, and the event was inspiring. I left excited to return to Duo and try out new tools I learned about and help our business continue to move forward.  But DrupalCon also gave me time to think.

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4 Must-Have SEO Drupal Modules

By Luke Zagata on Apr 27, 2017 8:54:00 AM

By Luke Zagata on Apr 27, 2017 8:54:00 AM

Just about every client I’ve interacted with since I’ve worked at Duo has asked a version of the same question: How do I make my site better when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO)?

When it comes to Drupal, there are a variety of modules you can use to improve various aspects of SEO

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What is "Intelligent Content"?

By Michael Silverman on Apr 25, 2017 8:11:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 25, 2017 8:11:00 AM

If you’ve watched any television recently, you probably have seen a commercial for Amazon Echo. You know, that device that has people saying, “Alexa, ask 1-800-Flowers to order Tina roses,” or “Alexa, add clean under the sofa to my to-do list."

The hands-free speaker is controlled by your voice and can quickly turn into more than a piece of technology: it can become your personal assistant.

I’ve been fascinated by artificial intelligence like this for a while. I vividly remember watching Jeopardy! six years ago and seeing the IBM computer Watson defeat two of the shows biggest champions and win $1 million.
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The Power of Paragraphs

By Michael Girgis on Apr 12, 2017 9:54:47 AM

By Michael Girgis on Apr 12, 2017 9:54:47 AM

I have to start with a disclaimer. This post is all about the Paragraphs module for Drupal. When I talk about the power of paragraphs, I’m talking about the module, which is an incredible asset for any Drupal website — I’m not talking about a grouping of multiple sentences.

OK, now that we have that out of the way, let me introduce you to Paragraphs. This module is a game changer when it comes to your website’s appearance, and it’s one that we’re using more and more here at Duo. Paragraphs provides a new way for site owners to create content on their website, and it unlocks an infinite number of new possibilities for how to design a site.

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ADA Accessibility Audits and Drupal

By Molly Lee on Apr 7, 2017 8:44:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Apr 7, 2017 8:44:00 AM

Did you know there are approximately 285 million people around the world who are visually impaired? If everyone who was visually impaired made up their own country, it’d be the fourth most populous nation in the world, trailing only India, China and the United States.

That number, estimated by the World Health Organization, drives home why we at Duo place such a high priority on web accessibility. Not only do we feel that web accessibility actually enhances the experience for all users, but we’ve also seen an upswing in law suits against businesses for not having accessible websites.

Topics: Design Services
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"Easy" Drupal Updates Moving Forward

By Michael Silverman on Apr 3, 2017 9:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 3, 2017 9:00:00 AM

I’ve been involved in content management for more than 15 years, and during that time, I’ve had my hands in just about every content management system you can think of. Drupal. Wordpress. Sitecore. Joomla.

You name it, I’ve been involved with it.

Each system has its obvious differences, but one of the common elements I’ve seen that was always a nightmare for clients was the painful platform updating process. In the past, whenever a new platform was developed, in order to take advantage of it, you had to do a lot of rebuilding of your site. You had to export your content, then import it back it. It took a lot of time.

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Drupal MidCamp Missives

By Rich Lawson on Apr 2, 2017 9:11:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Apr 2, 2017 9:11:00 AM

A number of my colleagues and I participated earlier this month at MidCamp 2017, where Drupal developers from around the Midwest gathered to network, learn and discuss their experiences with the open source platform.

MidCamp is a multi-day event that features a variety of speakers, training sessions, and sprints that center on Drupal.
I had the pleasure to host a lunch session titled “The Drupal Expert Is In” on the first day of the event. During the session, I was available to answer a variety of different questions, including questions about troubleshooting issues with redirects, brainstorming specialized format filters for blog posts, and providing a developer with information on how to earn an Acquia certification. Duo also proudly served as an accessibility sponsor, because just as we care about making websites that are usable for all types of people, we wanted to make sure anyone interested in attending MidCamp was able to do so and have a great experience while there.

The energy surrounding MidCamp was exciting, and it’s always inspiring to see the Drupal community come together in hopes of strengthening the platform. I was fortunate to attend a number of sessions and came away energized by all of them.

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How to make Drupal Integrations Work for You

By Rich Lawson on Mar 28, 2017 8:45:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Mar 28, 2017 8:45:00 AM

When potential clients ask me why they should build their website on Drupal instead of a different platform, my answer is simple.

Flexibility.

Drupal offers more flexibility than any other content management system because of its ability to seamlessly integrate with application program interfaces (APIs) of cloud-based apps and third-party services. Integrations are what allow you to create a site built specifically for your organization’s needs.

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Content Marketing or Fake News?

By Michael Silverman on Mar 23, 2017 9:15:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 23, 2017 9:15:00 AM

The growth of fake news means more scrutiny of all online content. Will yours measure up?

The term fake news burst across the American consciousness during the last presidential election. Some would argue a flood of fake news, such as a fake story linking Hillary Clinton to a child sex ring at a Washington, D.C. pizza parlor, actually influenced the election for President Trump.

While that’s open to debate, one thing is fact – despite efforts to rein it in, fake news seems here to stay and it very likely will impact the job we try to do as content marketers.

“That’s crazy, that’s you creating more fake news”

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How to Write a Drupal or WordPress RFP

By Kelly Balesteri on Mar 20, 2017 2:02:19 PM

By Kelly Balesteri on Mar 20, 2017 2:02:19 PM

The RFP process is a lot like Chicago’s winter weather – it’s something everyone deals with but if they had the chance, they’d likely want to change it for something better.

Well, the weather is the weather, but the good news is you can change the RFP process and do it in a way that will help you find a partner best suited to your website development and design needs.

Many companies and organizations approach the RFP-writing process with what could be called an Excel mindset --- they list a lot of things in a request, the answers to which they can then plop into a spreadsheet. Doing that, they believe, will allow them to compare all bidders on an equal footing.

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5 Ways to Optimize Drupal Website Conversions

By Molly Lee on Mar 14, 2017 10:15:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Mar 14, 2017 10:15:00 AM

As someone who spends her professional life focused on how users experience websites, I’ve encountered a number of articles that explain the value of conversion rate optimization (CRO) from the designers point of view. And rightly so. After all, the goal of many of our projects is to get your users to engage with your site in a way that is measurable and deepens their connection with your brand.

That’s a great goal.

Topics: Design Strategy
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Content-Driven Personalization with Drupal

By Rich Lawson on Mar 10, 2017 8:59:50 AM

By Rich Lawson on Mar 10, 2017 8:59:50 AM

I recently stumbled upon a nearly four-year-old HubSpot blog post about “22 Data-Backed Reasons to Personalize Your Marketing.” The statistics were fascinating, particularly given the age of the post. For example, among best-in-class B2B content marketers in 2013, 71% were customizing their content to the decision-maker’s profile. In 2017, I have to imagine that number is comfortably above the 90th percentile.

Now more than ever, marketers across industries recognize the value of content personalization. For many, though, whether it is due to technical deficiencies or a shortage of content resources, the dream of content personalization is just that: a dream.

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How to Integrate ADA Compliance into Your Site Development Process

By Molly Lee on Mar 8, 2017 8:30:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Mar 8, 2017 8:30:00 AM

When businesses think about complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), their first considerations normally turn to physical access to their facilities. But did you know the U.S. Department of Justice has said the ADA also applies to website accessibility?

The department first indicated ADA applies to websites in 2010, according to an article in The National Law Review. The department is preparing amendments to ADA on website accessibility expected out in 2018, but it’s been enforcing website accessibility in the meantime. Companies or organizations that receive federal funding risk losing that funding if they are not ADA-compliant.

Topics: Design Strategy
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Join me at the Intelligent Content Conference

By Michael Silverman on Mar 6, 2017 5:50:43 PM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 6, 2017 5:50:43 PM

The Intelligent Content Conference (ICC 2017) in Las Vegas on March 28-30, 2017 is the one content strategy event specifically designed for marketing practitioners. Their goal is the movement away from the copy/paste mentality of most marketers, toward a format-free, modular and single-source approach to content creation and distribution.

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Website Navigation in the Mobile Age

By Molly Lee on Mar 2, 2017 8:15:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Mar 2, 2017 8:15:00 AM

In the early days of mobile, a mobile site was thought of as a smaller, often stripped-down version of the main desktop site. But the days of thinking about mobile website design separately from your desktop website are over.

Now, with the increasing capabilities of smart phones and tablets, people are doing everything from researching purchases to buying airline tickets on mobile platforms, so your mobile site has to be as solid, feature-rich and versatile as your desktop site.

Topics: Marketing Design
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The Open Social Drupal Collaboration Platform

By Michael Silverman on Feb 27, 2017 12:30:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 27, 2017 12:30:00 PM

Whatever your niche, your audience is hungry to connect with others, offer opinions, gain insights from leaders, and become part of the in-crowd that shares and fuels its passions.

I wrote that statement seven years ago in my first book, “Capturing Community: How To Build, Manage, and Market Your Online Community,” yet the premise seems more relevant now than ever before.

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Why CTOs prefer Drupal over WordPress

By Rich Lawson on Feb 23, 2017 10:15:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Feb 23, 2017 10:15:00 AM

At least three times a month, I’m asked by either a prospective client or someone new to the content management industry why they should use Drupal instead of WordPress for their CMS needs. 

The reality is both platforms are great, but there are a number of reasons why I prefer Drupal to WordPress.

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Drupal 8’s Web Accessibility Improvements

By Rich Lawson on Feb 16, 2017 8:45:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Feb 16, 2017 8:45:00 AM

Did you know that more than a quarter of students in higher education are enrolled in at least one online course?

That’s right. According to the “Online Report Card: Tracking Online Education in the United States,” conducted by the Babson Survey Research Group, 28% of college students are in some way connected to online learning. In total, the survey found that approximately 5.8 million students across the country take online courses.

I bring those statistics up to stress the need for web accessibility. It matters. Higher education websites — whether they are geared specifically for online education or just to represent an institution as a whole —must meet specific guidelines in order to fulfill the needs of individuals with disabilities.

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Your Website Has a Job To Do

By Michael Silverman on Feb 14, 2017 8:45:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 14, 2017 8:45:00 AM

Most companies have job descriptions for their employees but who thinks about creating a job description for their website? That needs to change. Your website has a job to do, just like any other employee you have.

Your website is working for your company 24/7, greeting and interacting with clients and potential clients even when your other employees are out of the office or home in bed at night. So doesn’t it make sense to think about, specify and measure, the job your website should be doing for you?

Start by thinking about the function employees serve, namely to either help you increase revenues or decrease costs. Your website should be doing the same. You also need measurements to see if its meeting expectations, just as you would for any employee.

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Drupal's Multi-Site Functionality

By Rich Lawson on Feb 10, 2017 8:45:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Feb 10, 2017 8:45:00 AM

Have you ever tried to count the number of websites that exist within a single university? Obviously, there is the main university-wide site. Each school or department has its own website. And then there are countless other offshoots — hundreds of other sites that all ladder back to the university.

Now imagine this scenario happens. The university goes through a rebranding exercise, and in the process, develops a new logo. Each and every one of those websites needs to feature the updated logo. Think of all the work it will take to make those changes.

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Insights from 'The State of Inbound'

By Michael Silverman on Feb 8, 2017 10:15:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 8, 2017 10:15:00 AM

If you saw Hubspot’s State of Inbound 2016 report last fall, chances are you’ve put it aside, maybe after feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the information in there. Trying to digest it all at once was a bit like drinking from a fire hose.

But it’s worth taking a second look at what that report has to say about the state of inbound marketing. There are insights in the report that can help you.

Generating leads is the biggest challenge for inbound marketers, the report outlines, followed by proving the return on investment of inbound.

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Drupal and Higher Ed and Duo

By Michael Silverman on Feb 6, 2017 10:15:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 6, 2017 10:15:00 AM

When I founded Duo nearly 20 years ago, my goal was simple: I wanted to help organizations communicate with their clients and prospects online. Today we use Drupal to help organizations take a strategic approach to website and design in development.

One of our primary areas of focus is higher education. After all, 71 of the top 100 universities in the world use Drupal. Every Ivy League school has websites using Drupal. In fact, 26%of all .edu websites use Drupal — that’s twice as high as the number of sites using Wordpress.

Higher Ed and Drupal are a natural fit.

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4 Ways to make your Drupal Website Accessible

By Molly Lee on Feb 2, 2017 10:15:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Feb 2, 2017 10:15:00 AM

It’s been four years since my understanding of user accessibility completely changed. Looking back on it, I’m embarrassed by my naivety, but the lessons I learned helped me become the person I am today. 

I was working at the time with an educational platform that needed its website more accessible to users with restricted abilities. Unfortunately, my instinctual reaction was to worry that the necessary adjustments for “such a small percentage of users” would compromise the usability of the site.
Topics: Design Strategy
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Law sites should position firms as thought leaders

By Tim Thurn on Jan 31, 2017 10:15:00 AM

By Tim Thurn on Jan 31, 2017 10:15:00 AM

Law firm websites once all tended to have a certain look and feel --- they emphasized the expertise firms offer, which meant spotlighting their attorneys and their bona fides, such as cases won, awards, scholarly articles published and educational background.

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Repeat After Me – You Are Not Your User

By Molly Lee on Jan 27, 2017 9:30:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Jan 27, 2017 9:30:00 AM

Redesigning a website usually starts with key company stakeholders getting together for a planning session with each talking about how they think the new site should function. But if that’s how you’ve approached a site redesign or new site design, or how you’re planning to, stop right now. You’ve left out the most important stakeholders of all – your users.

How your customers use your site, and what they want from it, can often be completely different from what you’re thinking they want. In almost all cases, you are not your site user. Even when you are, a site might serve internal and external audiences, so you are not your only user.

Topics: Marketing Design
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See You at Drupalcon Baltimore April 24

By Rich Lawson on Jan 25, 2017 9:00:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Jan 25, 2017 9:00:00 AM

In less than three months, thousands of Drupal users from across the globe will descend on Baltimore, Md. for DrupalCon, the largest gathering of Drupal community members in the world.

If you’ve never attended the conference before, you’ve been missing out. The weeklong event is one of the greatest opportunities to be exposed to Drupal best practices, learn about new modules and network with a collaborative community.

This year’s event, scheduled from April 24-28 at the Baltimore Convention Center, will be my seventh DrupalCon. If you’re interested in attending, there’s still time to register. 

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Content Marketing with Purpose

By Michael Silverman on Jan 18, 2017 10:15:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 18, 2017 10:15:00 AM

Welcome back to the Duo Consulting blog. Content marketing has proliferated across the Web during the past five years. It’s everywhere these days and that means pretty much everyone has a blog. And everyone is writing pretty much the same thing, general pieces that you can find on blog after blog.

We will not be doing that any more. Our blog will give you real world examples of how content marketing is being done right. It will look at the interaction of content, technology and the importance good design plays in effective content marketing. And most importantly, it will give you real-world examples of how to more effectively use technology you already have.

Let’s face it, many, many companies today have bought more technology than they really know how to use. And when a new marketing challenge comes up, they often address it by buying even more.

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What is UX and Why is it Important?

By Molly Lee on Jan 11, 2017 8:00:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Jan 11, 2017 8:00:00 AM

UX is one of the most important aspects of a project, but it’s often looked at as the least. Visual design steals most of the love, and it’s understandable why. Visual design is the actual face of your brand. It’s what people see, and that directly influences how customers and clients think of your company. However, you can’t have a visual design without an plan. This is where UX comes in.

Topics: Marketing Design
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Best Practices for Professional Services

By Michael Silverman on Jan 4, 2017 2:04:45 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 4, 2017 2:04:45 PM

As a provider of a professional service, whether it’s accounting, management consulting, architecture or something else, you need a great website that helps drive business. However, professional services are a bit different than other websites such as product-based websites, e-commerce sites, and others. A different type of service requires a different type of website. So what does your professional services website need to be successful? Here are some vital website best practices:

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5 Reasons to use Drupal vs. WordPress

By Michael Silverman on Jan 4, 2017 10:18:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 4, 2017 10:18:00 AM

In our recent post, Drupal Rumors: What to Believe and What Not to Believe, we shared some of the most popular rumors about Drupal. One rumor related to Drupal being complex and hard to understand. We’ve found that when people say Drupal is hard to use, they are usually comparing Drupal to another popular CMS: WordPress.

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How to Maximize Website Usability

By Molly Lee on Dec 23, 2016 9:12:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Dec 23, 2016 9:12:00 AM

Recently, I researched human attention spans on Google. I found many articles claiming that humans’ attention spans (8 seconds) are now shorter than those of goldfish (9 seconds), as of 2013. Confusingly, I found just as many articles disputing the goldfish claim and estimating that human attention spans land within the range of 2 - 5 minutes. When it comes to websites, a staggering 55% of visitors spend fewer than 15 seconds on most web pages according to @arctictony

Topics: Marketing Design
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Use Drupal 8 to Meet Web Accessibility Standards

By Luke Zagata on Dec 15, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Luke Zagata on Dec 15, 2016 8:00:00 AM

In order to accommodate all website users, it’s essential to make sure that users who have difficulty navigating the web will be able to use your site with ease. Web accessibility considerations take into account users with visual impairment, color blindness, difficulty controlling a mouse, auditory impairment, those who rely on a screen reader and other issues that may make the internet a more daunting place.  

Topics: Development
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HubSpot Inbound Sales Certification

By Michael Silverman on Dec 12, 2016 10:15:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 12, 2016 10:15:00 AM

HubSpot introduced a new certification: the Inbound Sales Certification. The certification walks you through the inbound sales methodology and how to be an inbound salesperson. After watching the videos and passing the certification exam there are a few key takeaways I’d like to share with you. After all, as we build our websites for lead generation we also need to be aware of how we’re setting our salespeople up for success!

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8 Tools to Make the Most of Your Intranet

By Tim Thurn on Nov 30, 2016 11:26:45 AM

By Tim Thurn on Nov 30, 2016 11:26:45 AM

The most successful Intranets and extranets should encourage knowledge sharing through intuitive design. Your platform should foster communities of sharing and connect members of your organization, facilitate conversation, and enable the exchange of ideas. Your organization's intranets and extranets should be more than just a collection of text and files, they should be collaboration platforms.

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Prioritizing Active Buyers using Data

By Michael Silverman on Nov 28, 2016 10:15:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 28, 2016 10:15:00 AM

Welcome to 2017, where the internet has changed the way we do just about everything. One of the many things affected by this is the buyer-seller relationship. With the information buyers need to make a decision only a click away, the sellers are no longer the ones in power. However, this doesn’t mean salespeople aren’t needed.

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8 Popular Drupal Websites

By Michael Silverman on Nov 15, 2016 9:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 15, 2016 9:00:00 AM

“Weather.com is the highest trafficked Drupal site in existence, serving more than 100 million people per month.” - Drupal.org Case Study

Many sites we visit every day to do things like get news updates, check the weather, check sports scores and more, are built in Drupal. Drupal’s open-source platform is great for large-scale websites that need flexibility, custom integrations and have high volumes of traffic. Plus, there is a huge community supporting and constantly improving Drupal and a large number of knowledgeable developers who are skilled in making Drupal sites that are innovative and truly remarkable.

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Discover the Future of Digital Experience

By Michael Silverman on Nov 12, 2016 1:48:06 PM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 12, 2016 1:48:06 PM

  • As digital experiences evolve, it is critical you frequently examine whether you are delivering content your customers want in the best way possible. One way to do that is talk with and hear from thought leaders, practitioners and analysts who are designing and delivering game-changing digital and customer experiences.
  • Digital Experience (DX) Summit 2016 allows you to do just that. 
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How Much Does a Drupal Website Cost?

By Michael Silverman on Nov 9, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 9, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Whether you’re building a new website for your company, looking to make enhancements to an existing website or tackling an add-on project, like a collaboration platform, starting a website project can be difficult. From deciding whether to handle the project internally or hire an agency, to managing quotes from outside vendors, there’s a lot to keep track of. Because website project estimates can range from as little as $4,000 to as much as $100,000, it is hard for decision makers to know if they are getting a good deal or completely ripped off.

Topics: Development
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Best Practices for Modern Website Navigation

By Tim Thurn on Nov 1, 2016 4:00:00 PM

By Tim Thurn on Nov 1, 2016 4:00:00 PM

Navigation is a crucial part of any website and its design should not be taken lightly.

It is the portal to important content and it can drastically increase (or decrease) site click-through. Effective site navigation depends on almost all of the design disciplines involved in web design including information architecture, user experience design, visual design and front-end development. This post will focus mostly on visual design with some notes on usability and implementation.

Topics: Marketing
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Duo / Acquia Webinar on Open Marketing with Drupal 8

By Michael Silverman on Oct 13, 2016 10:06:25 AM

By Michael Silverman on Oct 13, 2016 10:06:25 AM

Enterprise marketing’s shift from push- to pull-based acquisition models has made creating a successful content marketing strategy increasingly difficult. It’s no longer just about building an intuitive website with strong SEO, it’s about choosing a platform that’s flexible, future-proof and secure.

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Accelerate Development in Drupal 8 with Acquia Lightning

By Rich Lawson on Sep 30, 2016 10:00:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Sep 30, 2016 10:00:00 AM

Acquia's Lightning distribution for Drupal 8 centers on providing a framework for rapidly building authoring and editorial solutions within Drupal, focusing on accelerating development by providing easily customizable layouts, better workflows, full point-in-time previews, and rich media integration.

Topics: Development
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How Internal Site Search Works

By Michael Silverman on Sep 12, 2016 1:00:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 12, 2016 1:00:00 PM

Internal site search is one of those things that seems very simple: type in a term or phrase on a website, and you'll get a list of results of pages on that site that are likely to contain what you're looking for -- very straightforward. Almost every site has search functionality built in.

Topics: Development
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Thunder & Lightning: Exploring Similarities and Differences Between the Drupal Distributions

By Rich Lawson on Sep 7, 2016 10:16:37 AM

By Rich Lawson on Sep 7, 2016 10:16:37 AM

Thunder and Lightning, a pair of Drupal 8 distribution profiles, aim to meet the needs of publishers and content authors. While it sounds like the two go hand-in-hand, they are created and maintained by two separate companies. Thunder was created by German publisher Hubert Burda Media and was designed specifically for professional publishers. Acquia’s Lightning distribution centers on creating great authoring experiences for editorial teams through a lightweight framework that developers can adapt to meet their needs.

Topics: Development
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Unit Testing in Drupal 8

By Swati Sharma on Aug 24, 2016 11:00:00 AM

By Swati Sharma on Aug 24, 2016 11:00:00 AM

Unit testing is a method of testing individual units of code. A unit can be defined as the smallest testable part of an application. Unit tests are short code fragments created during the development process. Unit testing verifies the behavior of a piece of code in isolation i.e., independent of its normal application context. A unit code can be as small as a class or even just a method.

Topics: Development
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How to Run a Content Audit

By Michael Silverman on Aug 17, 2016 2:00:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 17, 2016 2:00:00 PM

A content audit assesses your site's content, your users, and opportunities for growth. It helps your team understand the inner workings of the website, and provides a blueprint for future content initiatives. A content audit helps you develop a content strategy report that provides a roadmap for future content initiatives.

Topics: Marketing
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The Panama Papers Hack Proves What Can Happen When You Don’t Maintain Your Website

By Rich Lawson on Aug 3, 2016 10:00:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Aug 3, 2016 10:00:00 AM

The Panama Papers leak, which occurred earlier this year, had the online community speculating if poor security and Drupal bugs were to blame. Unrelated critical Drupal security patches were released in July, causing some news outlets to draw parallels between today’s security issues and Drupalgeddon, the highly critical security update released in 2014, which may have been the cause of the Panama Papers hack.

Topics: Development
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When Should I Update My Website? (And What Should I Update?)

By Michael Silverman on Jul 7, 2016 11:26:43 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 7, 2016 11:26:43 AM

When should I update my website?

Short Answer:

Topics: Marketing
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Should You Do Discovery Before Committing to a Full Website Redesign?

By Michael Silverman on Jun 29, 2016 9:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 29, 2016 9:00:00 AM

Building a new website is a long process, especially if it’s been a while since your last redesign. There are plenty of things to worry about too, from UX to design and content to personas and goals. Sometimes, it’s difficult to know where to start. Believe it or not, this feeling can be mutual!

Topics: Marketing
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Understanding the Workflow Initiative in Drupal 8

By Rich Lawson on Jun 27, 2016 9:00:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Jun 27, 2016 9:00:00 AM

As Dries shared in this year’s Driesnote at DrupalCon, he has suggested a variety of different initiatives to help improve Drupal 8’s core offerings. One of the initiatives Dries shared was the Workflow Initiative, which is already underway. The history of this initiative is explained in the post Dries wrote in April, Improving Drupal’s Content Workflow. In this post, I’ll discuss the functionality on the roadmap of the Workflow Initiative over the next few years and what you can expect from the roadmap. 

Topics: Development
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Why is User Experience Design Important to Your Law Firm?

By Michael Silverman on Jun 22, 2016 9:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 22, 2016 9:00:00 AM

In the past few months we have been working on DuoLaw - a Drupal base build that can be used for just about any law firm. We took our knowledge of law firms, an area where we have a lot of experience, and created a basic installation profile that would account for 90 percent of site functionality out of the box, while still allowing for additional custom elements and custom design. We focused our efforts on creating a solution that would work for firms with anywhere from 5-500 employees.

Topics: Marketing
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Consolidating Four Sites Into One Using HubSpot's Smart Content

By Kelly Balesteri on Jun 21, 2016 9:00:00 AM

By Kelly Balesteri on Jun 21, 2016 9:00:00 AM

How do you combine four sites into one but still display four different versions of content? The answer is HubSpot’s smart content used in a whole new way. That’s exactly what we did for Nosco.

Topics: Marketing
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Join Duo at the 2016 Legal Marketing Technology Conference

By Michael Silverman on Jun 20, 2016 9:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 20, 2016 9:00:00 AM

The Legal Marketing Technology Conference is the largest conference dedicated to technologies that law firm professionals use to identify, attract and support clients. They provide the premier forum to learn from and network with thought leaders and colleagues. Duo Consulting is proud to be a Megabyte sponsor of the Chicago conference, held this Thursday, June 23rd.

Topics: Marketing
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Working With Google Reps On Adwords Campaigns

By Michael Silverman on Jun 16, 2016 9:37:02 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 16, 2016 9:37:02 AM

We recently did some advertising with Google Adwords to try to get some leads from the keywords Web Design and Drupal Development. Part of the reason we decided to do this is because we were contacted by a Google representative who told us about Google’s Adwords services. Google offers a ton of help planning for and setting up Adwords Campaigns, if you are willing to spend the money. Here are a few takeaways based off of our experiences.

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The Future of Drupal: Our Thoughts on the Driesnote From DrupalCon 2016

By Rich Lawson on Jun 8, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Jun 8, 2016 8:00:00 AM

DrupalCon 2016 kicked off in New Orleans with the annual Driesnote. Dries Buytaert took the stage to give attendees an update on Drupal 8 and share initiatives for the future of the platform. Dries also shared results from the annual Drupal user survey and how those results influence some of the key initiatives for the future of Drupal 8. 

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Understanding the Critical Metrics for Your Drupal Business [Video]

By Michael Silverman on Jun 6, 2016 9:28:35 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 6, 2016 9:28:35 AM

At DrupalCon New Orleans, Dave Terry, Co-founder and Partner of Mediacurrent, and I presented a session titled Understanding the Critical Metrics for Your Drupal Business. The session addressed the truth about being in the trenches of actually running an agency and the challenges that come along with it. Instead of giving vague, well-intended advice, in our session we shared the critical metrics we measure and how this has led to successful growth for our businesses.

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Drupal Rumors: What to Believe and What Not to Believe

By Michael Silverman on May 31, 2016 2:30:18 PM

By Michael Silverman on May 31, 2016 2:30:18 PM

Over the years of working with clients at Duo and being active in the Drupal industry, we’ve heard a variety of gossip and rumors about Drupal.

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Drupal 8 and the Customer Experience

By Michael Silverman on May 27, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 27, 2016 8:00:00 AM

During the Driesnote at this year’s DrupalCon New Orleans, Dries shared some exciting news about the future of the customer experience in Drupal 8.

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Pairing Content and User Experience to Drive Your Website

By Michael Silverman on May 26, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 26, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Content strategy and user experience go hand in hand, and the sessions I attended at DrupalCon this year did a great job of bringing that idea to the forefront.

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5 Lessons from HubSpot Partner Day

By Michael Silverman on May 24, 2016 10:46:32 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 24, 2016 10:46:32 AM

Last week, Duo’s CEO, Michael, and I spent a few days out at HubSpot HQ in Cambridge, Massachusetts. From networking to high-fiving over product announcements, we had a fantastic time. We got to hear about all the great things that HubSpot is doing to plan for the future for both the HubSpot software and the Partner Program. This translates into how we can be even better for our clients moving forward. Plus, we got to meet with a bunch of awesome members of the HubSpot team as well as other partners we could learn from. There were even presentations by HubSpot's co-founders and HubSpot's CMO. 

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Why Should I Care About Drupal 8?

By Rich Lawson on May 16, 2016 12:44:37 PM

By Rich Lawson on May 16, 2016 12:44:37 PM

After a long wait and lot of work from the Drupal community, Drupal 8 is available and ready for use. Why should you care? Well, Drupal 8 is much more powerful right out of the box than its predecessors and is ready to scale and evolve moving forward as well. Here are a few main reasons you should care about Drupal 8.

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Visit Us at DrupalCon for a Spicy Giveaway!

By Michael Silverman on May 9, 2016 10:02:43 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 9, 2016 10:02:43 AM

DrupalCon is a week-long conference where, once a year, the Drupal community comes together at the biggest Drupal event in the world: DrupalCon North America. This year, DrupalCon North America is in New Orleans, Louisiana from May 9th to May 13th. Duo Consulting is a bronze sponsor (booth #225) of the event, has a number of team members attending, and our CEO, Michael Silverman, will be presenting a session on the business track. 

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Join Duo's CEO at DrupalCon for Understanding Critical Metrics About Your Drupal Business

By Michael Silverman on May 4, 2016 11:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 4, 2016 11:00:00 AM

Michael Silverman, CEO of Duo Consulting, and Dave Terry, Co-founder and Partner of Mediacurrent, are presenting the session Understanding the Critical Metrics for Your Drupal Business at DrupalCon in New Orleans next week.

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Proving (or Disproving) Your Assumptions: Why User Testing Is Important

By Michael Silverman on May 3, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 3, 2016 8:00:00 AM

I think the title says it all. User testing is something that is unbelievably valuable, but is often overlooked. I’m not entirely sure if people don’t see the value, if they assume that because we did an in depth discovery that everything will work out, or if they think that any improvement is good enough. But I will say that as a professional and a perfectionist, I don’t like to stop until I know what I built works.

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MidCamp, DrupalCon and the Incredible Drupal Community

By Michael Silverman on May 2, 2016 9:39:03 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 2, 2016 9:39:03 AM

This year I was on the planning and organization committee for MidCamp for the first time. I had to no idea what to expect going into it especially since, at MidCamp last year, I was completely new to Drupal and didn’t know anyone in the community. Little did I know, volunteering to help plan and organize MidCamp would turn out to be one of the best things I did all year! I got to learn so much about the amazing Drupal community and meet a bunch of seriously awesome individuals.

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Mobile First Improvements in Drupal 8

By Michael Girgis on Apr 27, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Girgis on Apr 27, 2016 8:00:00 AM

A large area of focus for Drupal 8 was to make the experience more mobile friendly, from the installation to authoring experience. New features in Drupal 8, as well as those you’re used to from Drupal 7, are designed for mobile, making it easier to edit or make changes to your Drupal site from any device.

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Our Adwords Strategy: What We've Learned Six Weeks In

By Michael Silverman on Apr 26, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 26, 2016 8:00:00 AM

A successful Adwords campaign is an ever evolving entity. All the preparation and planning is just a base, and will require constant adjustment. This adjustment is based off of the trends you see and the data you collect. Six weeks in, we have made a number of adjustments to our campaigns and are starting to see the payoff!

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Designing User-Friendly Forms: What You Need to Know

By Michael Silverman on Apr 25, 2016 11:34:41 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 25, 2016 11:34:41 AM

Lead generation forms on your website are one of the most important elements in marking your website work for you. Forms are vital and for users to fill them out there are many variables that must be considered. It is challenging to find the right balance between asking for all the information you need and not overwhelming your scaring away your users. However, it is absolutely vital that we spend time optimizing our forms if we want our websites to be successful lead generation engines. According to MarketingSherpa, 56% of marketers consider optimizing form logic to have a very significant impact on website performance. So, how do we do this?

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The Evolution of Web Development Models

By Michael Silverman on Apr 20, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 20, 2016 8:00:00 AM

With the rise of globalization, web development companies are able to work on any project from any location at any time of day. This trend of location independence has lead to different web development models in recent years, including boutique, offshore, and hybrid.

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How Professional Services Can Use Personalization to Engage Website Visitors

By Tim Thurn on Apr 18, 2016 9:38:20 AM

By Tim Thurn on Apr 18, 2016 9:38:20 AM

Business are people working with people, not contacts in a database. So isn’t it time we treat our prospects as people instead of records in a CRM? When it comes to professional service industries some words come to mind. Words like: trust, fear, uncertainty and security. You want your clients to associate you with trust and security, not fear or uncertainty. One way to build this trust and feeling of security is to personalize their experience with you from the first time they visit your website. After all, people do much more research by themselves nowadays before ever reaching out to a business. So, how do we personalize this experience?

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More on Google Analytics: Goals, Funnels, and Filters

By Michael Silverman on Apr 15, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 15, 2016 8:00:00 AM

In one of my last blog posts, I talked a bit about useful metrics in Google Analytics. These were base level metrics that you could easily access by creating a dashboard or just clicking through the available data in the left hand navigation column. Today, we are going to take a deeper dive into a few other features that the Google Analytics suite has to offer. Let’s talk goals, funnels and filters.

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The Evolution of Law Firm Websites

By Tim Thurn on Apr 13, 2016 1:00:05 PM

By Tim Thurn on Apr 13, 2016 1:00:05 PM

Think back to ten or even just five years ago and you’ll find some major pieces of our lives have changed significantly. From the way we consume information to the cars we drive, things have evolved quite a bit. This includes law firms and their websites. The way we do business in general has transformed quite a bit over the past few years and we need to transform along with it. People are more informed than ever before and tend to do a lot more research on their own before ever reaching out to someone for information about a service. This includes legal services. So how have law firm websites evolved to meet the needs of the evolving clients? Let’s take a look.

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Why We Chose Drupal 8 for DuoLaw

By Tim Thurn on Apr 11, 2016 10:00:00 AM

By Tim Thurn on Apr 11, 2016 10:00:00 AM

Duo has worked closely with law firms for over 15 years. Through those years of experience, we’ve learned about some of the common problems law firms face and understand the needs common to the legal community.

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Duo Consulting will be at the Legal Marketing Association Annual Conference

By Tim Thurn on Apr 8, 2016 9:30:00 AM

By Tim Thurn on Apr 8, 2016 9:30:00 AM

Duo Consulting will be in booth #71 at the 2016 Legal Marketing Association Annual Conference in Austin, Texas. The conference is happening April 11th through the 13th and Duo will be there with lots of exciting things to share.

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How Working With Drupal Helped a Law Firm Make Important Content Updates

By Michael Silverman on Apr 6, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 6, 2016 8:00:00 AM

With so many new improvements and enhancements to the Drupal platform, it can be easy to forget that Drupal excels at the simple stuff. At its heart, Drupal is a content management system that can support both large and small scale operations, from large government entities to Fortune 500 companies.

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Updates to the Authoring Experience in Drupal 8

By Michael Silverman on Apr 4, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 4, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Content is the lifeblood of any content management system. Improving the out-of-the-box authoring experience was a main focus for Drupal 8. For those of us that use the author interface every day, there are some exciting changes in the experience. These include a new in-place editing feature, redesigned content creation page, refreshed admin theme, and more.

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Important Google Analytics Metrics

By Michael Silverman on Mar 29, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 29, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Some people might think that Google Analytics is just used to crunch numbers. While this is true, analytics can tell you so much more than just how many people view your site. Google Analytics offers a ton of data that you can use to drive UX and design decisions, as well as influence content and marketing.

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A Guide to Understanding Wireframes

By Michael Silverman on Mar 22, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 22, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Confusion on what exactly a wireframe is comes up more often than you would think. I have been part of so many projects where the team shows off a wireframe deliverable which is met with a particular mix of confusion and disappointment. This is usually followed up by a compliment sandwich of questions including:

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A Tale of Two (Hundred) Keywords: Duo’s AdWords Strategy

By Michael Silverman on Mar 21, 2016 2:31:57 PM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 21, 2016 2:31:57 PM

So It Begins

In November 2015 the CEO of Duo was contacted by a representative from Google who was wondering if we were interested in using their AdWords platform. At the time, we were working on moving the Duo site to HubSpot and in doing so, I was reassessing keyword strategy and on page optimization.

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How to Know When You're Ready to Move to Drupal 8

By Rich Lawson on Mar 18, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Mar 18, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Since the release of Drupal 8 last fall, those of us in the community have been anxiously awaiting the opportunity to start working in Drupal 8. But before jumping straight into Drupal 8, it’s important to take into consideration module availability, time constraints, your budget for upgrading, the features of your site and more.

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The Rise of Open Source

By Michael Silverman on Mar 17, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 17, 2016 8:00:00 AM

With the exciting news that CIGNEX Datamatics has made a strategic investment in Duo Consulting, I wanted to take a moment to explain more about how this partnership began - with open source technology.

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Planning for Accessibility: Drupal MidCamp 2016

By Michael Silverman on Mar 15, 2016 11:51:05 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 15, 2016 11:51:05 AM

This year was my first year on the planning committee for MidCamp which is an annual event held in Chicago that brings together people who use, develop, design, and support Drupal. When we began working on MidCamp 2016 we had a goal: make this the most accessible Drupal camp yet. MidCamp has always tried to be one of the most accessible Drupal camp and technology conferences available. Duo has an interest in planning for accessibility in our sites which is why I was especially appreciative that MidCamp also strives for accessibility. 

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Duo’s Aaron Meeuwsen and Scott Weston to speak at MidCamp 2016

By Michael Silverman on Mar 14, 2016 8:41:23 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 14, 2016 8:41:23 AM

The Midwest Area Drupal Camp (MidCamp) is an exciting event held each year in Chicago that brings together people of all types who are interested in Drupal. This includes developers, designers, users, prospective users and more. The 2016 MidCamp is being held at the UIC Student Center West on March 17th-20th. The four day event includes trainings, keynote speakers, educational sessions, panel conversations, code sprints, and various meetups and socials. Two of the educational sessions will be presented by members of our own Duo team!

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Why Your Law Firm Needs a Responsive Website

By Chad Johnson on Mar 7, 2016 10:14:27 AM

By Chad Johnson on Mar 7, 2016 10:14:27 AM

As a provider of legal services, a website is a vital business asset and must be thought of which just as much care and consideration as the lobby of your offices. Your website sets the tone of all future communication with your potential clients, it gives a first impression of what it will be like to work with you, and it communicates how you view yourself as an option in the industry. Plus, to even be worth your time and resources, your website must be built properly to function as a tool for your business.

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CIGNEX Datamatics Makes Strategic Investment in Duo Consulting

By Michael Silverman on Mar 3, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 3, 2016 8:00:00 AM

I am proud to announce today that CIGNEX Datamatics has made a significant strategic investment in Duo Consulting. This is great news and means only good things for our business and clients.

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The 5 Website Updates You Need and Why

By Michael Silverman on Feb 29, 2016 10:40:34 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 29, 2016 10:40:34 AM

When we think of website upgrades, refreshes and redesigns we often think of things like moving to a newer platform, giving the site a “facelift” or new paint job, and painstakingly rewriting all the content on the site. However, there are some vital parts of a site that are often overlooked for upgrades that could be much more beneficial to spend some time improving. 

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The Fellowship of the Keyword: SEO Basics

By Michael Silverman on Feb 26, 2016 9:36:35 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 26, 2016 9:36:35 AM

SEO. Another frightening acronym that doesn’t make much sense to the non-tech types. Don't worry though. This one is pretty straightforward. SEO means Search Engine Optimization. It’s not really one thing you do, but rather a bunch of different factors (both on and off the page) that you can do that should help improve your website’s visibility in search engines.

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Why You Should Work with a Certified HubSpot Partner Agency

By Michael Silverman on Feb 25, 2016 10:00:40 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 25, 2016 10:00:40 AM

Duo Consulting is a Certified, Gold-Tier HubSpot Partner Agency. Why does this matter?

At Duo Consulting we’re always looking for ways to grow and improve our knowledge to stay on the cutting edge of the work that we do. We want to be the best possible solution for our clients. In order to achieve this we are often working toward individual and team certifications to keep our skills up to date as well as to learn new things.

As of January, 2016, Duo Consulting is Partner Certified by the HubSpot Academy for another year. This is the 3rd year in a row that Duo has renewed our Partner Certification and we’ve maintain our place in the Gold Partner Tier as well.

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How to Integrate Google Analytics with Drupal

By Michael Silverman on Feb 23, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 23, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Google Analytics is a powerful business tool that generates details statistics about a website’s traffic, traffic sources, conversions and sales. When paired with your Drupal website, Google Analytics allows user experience designers and marketers to gather important information about your website that can be used to make continuous improvements and drive positive change for your business. 

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6 Examples of Strong Homepage SEO Optimization

By Michael Silverman on Feb 22, 2016 1:54:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 22, 2016 1:54:00 PM

We just finished conducting an SEO Site Audit for one of our clients, grading them on everything from navigation to URL structure, headings and content. We're happy to report (and they were happy to find) that they made it out of the site audit without a failing grade. It doesn't do much to point out the areas in need of work without some suggestions on how to improve. So, we gathered up six homepage examples that are exceptionally put together and optimized for SEO. What are some of the key elements that make up an all-star homepage?

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5 Benefits of Hiring a Web Development Agency (vs. in-house DIY)

By Michael Silverman on Feb 22, 2016 10:11:07 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 22, 2016 10:11:07 AM

When you begin to work on a new web project or embark on a website redesign, it can be tough to decide how much can be covered by your in-house development team and what warrants finding an agency to partner with. There are many benefits to hiring a web development agency over trying to do everything in-house. In addition to the experience, agencies have flexibility, scalability and simply an outside perspective.

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Duo Consulting Recognized by Clutch as a Leading Digital Marketing Agency in Chicago

By Michael Silverman on Feb 18, 2016 9:22:09 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 18, 2016 9:22:09 AM

Clutch, a B2B research firm, has identified top digital marketing agencies in Chicago and Duo Consulting made the cut. A big thanks to Clutch for recognizing us as one of the leading digital marketing agencies in Chicago. 

This is the first report highlighting top digital marketing agencies in Chicago. The research "maps agencies' focus on digital marketing services against their ability to deliver on clients' expectations."

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Why We Can’t Give a Fixed Website Price Before Discovery

By Molly Lee on Feb 16, 2016 10:20:35 AM

By Molly Lee on Feb 16, 2016 10:20:35 AM

When starting a new website project the first thing most people look for is the cost. We often get people asking questions like “how much will this cost me?” or “can you build a site within our budget?” However, this is not the best place to start nor is it usually even possible. Sure, you need to have a budget in mind but more importantly you need to have goals in mind. You could throw a ton of money at a really impressive, expensive custom website, but if it’s not built with your goals in mind it will not serve its purpose. You will wind up needing to redo the website, yet again, in a year or less. So, what can you do then? The answer is simple: discovery.

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3 Things to Consider When Migrating a Drupal Website

By Michael Silverman on Feb 11, 2016 8:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 11, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Migrating your website can be an arduous process. In order for a website migration to be successful, you need to do more than just get the new site up and running. To be successful, you must also allocate the necessary resources to make sure content and SEO value is properly transferred to the new site. When it comes to migrating your existing site to a Drupal website, or upgrading your existing Drupal site to Drupal 8, there are a few particular things to keep in mind.

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Why Your Blog Needs a Style Guide

By Michael Silverman on Feb 8, 2016 9:07:09 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 8, 2016 9:07:09 AM

When it comes to a great blog there are a few major pieces that need to be in place for it to be successful. There’s the template for the post, the content you’re including and there’s the style. You want your blog posts to have a consistent style to maintain your company’s voice and tone, communicate consistently, and to tell both searchers and search engines what your post is all about! So, what’s the best way to maintain consistent style that guarantees SEO optimization and consistent writing and publishing choices? A style guide of course! Below are the key elements your blog style guide should include.

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5 Things CMOs Should Know About Drupal 8

By Michael Silverman on Jan 27, 2016 2:15:49 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 27, 2016 2:15:49 PM

When it comes to picking a content management system, there are plenty of things that should be considered. From both a technology and marketing perspective, you need to be sure that your CMS can handle digital analytics, asset and content management, and marketing automation. Duo has chosen to work with Drupal, an open source CMS, since 2009. We chose Drupal for many reasons, but one of the top was the fact that Drupal is neutral; it’s not part of a marketing stack and is designed to integrate with best-of-breed applications.

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Are You Using These 6 Website Trends in 2016?

By Michael Silverman on Jan 25, 2016 12:05:42 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 25, 2016 12:05:42 PM

There are always round up posts at the end of the year predicting trends for the following twelve months. It can be difficult to discern which ones are simply fads that will fadeaway and which ones are beneficial improvements you can use to upgrade your website for a lasting impact. So, I took a little extra time to put together my list of website trends I see growing in 2016. I had our designers and developers weigh in as well. So now, I present to you the 6 website trends to use in 2016 and how to tell if they are right for you.

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3 Reasons Growth Driven Design is the Process for You

By Kelly Balesteri on Jan 21, 2016 8:15:14 AM

By Kelly Balesteri on Jan 21, 2016 8:15:14 AM

Redesigning your organization’s website can seem like a daunting task. Website redesigns have become notorious for being expensive, time-consuming, resource-sucking projects that also tend to cause some friction among team members. The fact is, the traditional web design process is broken. In fact, according to HubSpot’s “The Science of Website Redesign:”

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5 Pieces of Content Your Website is Missing

By Michael Silverman on Jan 20, 2016 9:02:45 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 20, 2016 9:02:45 AM

While website design is important, even the best looking websites have opportunities for improvement. If you’re looking to drive traffic to your website, engage your users and convert them to customers, you not only need great web design but great website content as well.

If you have a great looking website, but it’s not performing as well as you thought it would be, it might be time to consider these five pieces of content your website may be missing.
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Finding and Defining Your Website's Voice and Tone

By Michael Silverman on Jan 11, 2016 12:10:35 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 11, 2016 12:10:35 PM

When you don’t have a clearly defined voice and tone strategy for your website, your website is communicating the wrong message to your visitors. Instead of greeting them with a unique message full of context and information they can relate to, your website instead says:

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Why Drupal 8 is Great For Building Collaboration Platforms

By Michael Silverman on Jan 7, 2016 1:46:31 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 7, 2016 1:46:31 PM

While the release of Drupal 8 brings improvements to nearly every part of the platform, one update in particular includes much needed enhancements for building internal and external collaboration platforms.

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What Drupal 8 Means For CEOs

By Michael Silverman on Jan 5, 2016 12:05:05 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 5, 2016 12:05:05 PM

The release of Drupal 8 provides many new enhancements and improvements to the Drupal platform. While it’s easy to think that most of the changes only affect developers who are in the weeds with Drupal on a daily basis, many of the changes have strong implications for CEOs and other members of executive leadership teams. From security improvements to a stronger market for developers, find out how Drupal 8 can save you time, money and resources.

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Drupal 6 End-of-Life Announcement: What You Need to Know to Keep Your Site Secure

By Rich Lawson on Dec 9, 2015 2:58:08 PM

By Rich Lawson on Dec 9, 2015 2:58:08 PM

One of the biggest changes to the Drupal landscape in 2016 is the sunsetting of Drupal 6. It is Drupal’s policy to only support the current and previous stable versions of the platform, so three months after the release of Drupal 8, Drupal 6 will no longer be supported. This policy was created to prevent Drupal core and module maintainers from having to maintain more than two active versions at one time.

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7 Benefits of Drupal's Open Source Software

By Michael Silverman on Nov 30, 2015 11:12:44 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 30, 2015 11:12:44 AM

One of the greatest benefits of the Drupal CMS is the fact that it is open source software. That means, according to the Drupal website, “anyone can download, use, work on, and share it with others. It’s built on principles like collaboration, globalism, and innovation.”

While the words open source can bring up thoughts of software that is unsecured or vulnerable, in reality open source software is just as safe and secure to use as any other licensed product and the benefits of open source software greatly outweigh any potential negatives.

Over the last 15 years, Duo has built hundreds of websites using Drupal. Here are what we’ve found to be the 7 greatest benefits of using Drupal’s open source software:

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Drupal 8: The Best Use of the Block System Yet

By Michael Silverman on Nov 24, 2015 9:33:40 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 24, 2015 9:33:40 AM

The release of Drupal 8 will bring a plethora of new features; one of the more pertinent and important ones is the Drupal 8 block system. The block API has gone through a ground up overhaul and allows much more flexibility with how your blocks are both defined and displayed. This post will highlight some of the more powerful features of the Drupal 8 block system as well as some gotchas and best practices. Let’s get started.

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The Moment We've All Been Waiting For: Drupal 8 is Here

By Michael Silverman on Nov 19, 2015 10:08:50 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 19, 2015 10:08:50 AM

Today is the day! Drupal 8 is officially here.

Image courtesy of Drupal.org

The first supported release of Drupal 8 is ready for use. Drupal 8 was built by a total of:

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Top 5 Fears about Website Redesigns and How to Overcome Them

By Michael Silverman on Nov 12, 2015 11:33:14 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 12, 2015 11:33:14 AM

We all have fears about redesigning our websites. Maybe you’re afraid it will cost too much or you will choose the wrong CMS and it will be too difficult to manage moving forward. Fortunately, all of these fears have very simple solutions to overcoming them. Here are some of the most common fears we hear when working on website redesigns and how we help clients overcome those fears. 

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Content Management and Personalization: Acquia Engage 2015

By Michael Silverman on Nov 2, 2015 1:26:37 PM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 2, 2015 1:26:37 PM

Is personalization a tool in your toolbox? 

Last week a few members of the Duo team attended Acquia Engage in Boston, Massachusetts. Agencies, designers and digital strategists from multiple industries came together to share how they innovate in the digital space. In addition to keynotes and collaborative sessions there were many networking opportunities. Some of the key takeaways our team brought back are outlined below including the focus on personalization in content moving forward.

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The Scariest Costumes to Wear to an Inbound Marketing Halloween Party

By Michael Silverman on Oct 21, 2015 12:53:43 PM

By Michael Silverman on Oct 21, 2015 12:53:43 PM

Halloween is just around the corner and the conversations have begun. What are you going to be for Halloween? Have you picked out your costume yet? How are you going to celebrate? As a true marketing nerd I’ll admit I was once a tweet for Halloween. Sporting my HubSpot t-shirt and some blue angel wings I spoke in exactly 140-character phrases…okay I’m kidding about that last part but the costume was real. 

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Acquia Engage 2015: Digital Marketing, Innovation and Transformation

By Michael Silverman on Oct 19, 2015 4:11:26 PM

By Michael Silverman on Oct 19, 2015 4:11:26 PM

Duo Consulting is attending and sponsoring Acquia Engage, a digital transformation conference that is taking place in Boston this week. It is an event to bring together those at the forefront of digital transformation working to improve the customer experience. Engage focuses on digital business strategy and brings business leaders, marketing professionals and technical management together to collaborate and learn about the latest digital strategies and tactics. (Acquia CEO Tom Erickson - Photo by Kyle Alspach)

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Content Marketing: Your Very First Steps

By Michael Silverman on Aug 5, 2015 9:06:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 5, 2015 9:06:00 AM

B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads per month than those who do not. (HubSpot State of Inbound Marketing) However, simply blogging is not enough; there's more to the story. You have to promote your content, capture the leads who come to your content, and keep them engaged until they’re ready to convert to a sales-ready lead. Below, we'll outline the 6 basic steps to get started with content marketing (plus a bonus step!).

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Pros & Cons of Popular Lead Generation Tools

By Michael Silverman on Jul 31, 2015 1:57:38 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 31, 2015 1:57:38 PM

There’s a nearly endless list of tools you could use to supplement your lead generation efforts. Each tool is often meant for very different circumstances with different types of users. Whether or not a tool is a good fit may depend on things like the type of audience you have, their stage in the buying process, the type of product or service your company provides, among others. While you may be able to choose a tool or two to try with your audience by learning more about the tool, it may also require testing a few to see which one works best for you. Below are a few of our favorite tools and some of the pros and cons associated with using them. 

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There's More to Digital Marketing than Marketing Automation

By Michael Silverman on Jul 20, 2015 11:59:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 20, 2015 11:59:00 AM

Marketing automation can help your business in a number of ways, including improving the management and nurturing of your leads, aiding campaign execution and increasing productivity. However, there’s more to digital marketing than automation and there are many marketing essentials that require strategic planning and hands-on effort. Here are some other important considerations for marketing online. 

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How to Hire a Modern Marketer Not a Marketing Dinosaur

By Michael Silverman on Jul 16, 2015 4:08:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 16, 2015 4:08:00 PM

In this modern era of marketing it’s hard to find the right balance in a new employee of experience in the field and the wide array of technical skills and broad knowledge that a modern marketer must posses. How do you go about hiring someone who is a modern marketer and not a marketing dinosaur stuck in the old-school ways of doing things? 

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What Your Website Says Behind Your Back (And How to Fix It)

By Michael Silverman on Jun 9, 2015 9:51:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 9, 2015 9:51:00 AM

Your website says a lot about you when you're not around. From the way your content is organized to the words you use in your menu, your website speaks to your visitors. So how do you know if it's talking nicely about you or betraying you when you have your back turned? Here are a few ways: 

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DrupalCon 2015 in LA: Top Sessions & 3 Acquia Grand Masters

By Michael Silverman on May 28, 2015 9:21:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 28, 2015 9:21:00 AM

First of all, we want to extend a huge thank you to anyone who stopped by our booth during DrupalCon to say hello and possibly drop in a business card for a chance to win our Jambox. I had a really great time meeting and chatting with all of you and learning about what you do and sharing what Duo does. I'm still new to the Drupal community but I'm loving it so far! Also, congrats to Dylan Burris for winning our Jambox mini!

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Reduce and Reuse with View Modes

By Michael Girgis on May 26, 2015 8:59:00 AM

By Michael Girgis on May 26, 2015 8:59:00 AM

In his most recent post, my colleague Ryan discussed the virtues of atomic design and the benefits of taking a more modular approach to development in Drupal. He touched on Drupal's system of "view modes" and how they provide developers with a great way to streamline theming of a site's so-called "molecules." I'm going to dig just a little deeper into view modes and provide some examples of how useful they can be.

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Come Find Us at DrupalCon 2015 in LA - Booth #505

By Michael Silverman on May 13, 2015 9:39:01 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 13, 2015 9:39:01 AM

Some of the Duo team is attending DrupalCon 2015 in Los Angeles, California this week. Duo is also a Bronze level sponsor of the conference. If you're attending, swing by and say hi at booth #505 where we'll have a new video about the work we've been doing, stickers, and raffle! If you saw us at MidCamp you may know what we're talking about! If not, come chat with us to find out what you could win. 

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A Drupal Themer’s First DrupalCon

By Michael Silverman on May 4, 2015 10:49:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 4, 2015 10:49:00 AM

In just one week the Duo Consulting Developers will be on their way to Los Angeles, California to attend DrupalCon 2015. This week-long event is packed with educational sessions, keynotes, sprints and more. Thousands of people from across the world who use, develop, design, and support Drupal come to DrupalCon each year. Duo's Marketing Manager, Stephanie, sat down with one of our Front End Developers, Wade, to get his take on the upcoming conference. 

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Iterative Development, Atomic Design, and Drupal

By Ryan Beach on Apr 21, 2015 9:17:00 AM

By Ryan Beach on Apr 21, 2015 9:17:00 AM

At Duo, when we’re not pumping out grade-A technical solutions for our clients, we spend a fair amount of time ruminating about Drupal, our clients, and the way that we approach development.  We are always focused on how to form a more cohesive and efficient process between our back-end developers and front-end developers, or “themers.”

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5 Reasons Your Website Needs to be Responsive (Besides Google's Update)

By Michael Silverman on Apr 17, 2015 12:26:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 17, 2015 12:26:00 PM

Where is your phone right now? 

Mine is right next to me on my desk. Here’s the thing. Most people sleep with their phones within an arm’s reach. They take them to the bathroom. They stare at them on trains to work every day. They sit with them on their lunch breaks, in waiting rooms, at sporting events, in line at Starbucks and while watching TV. People have the ability to search for something online at any point in their day. Not only that, they want answers and they want them quickly. In this age of instant gratification we expect exactly that.

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Setting Up Postfix to Work with MAMP

By Matt Messmer on Apr 15, 2015 9:31:00 AM

By Matt Messmer on Apr 15, 2015 9:31:00 AM

When developing Drupal websites locally, you may want to be able to send emails for testing purposes and have them all get rerouted to you for debugging purposes. At Duo, I’m often working on database dumps from production sites that have many user accounts and I want to make sure that when sending these test emails, none of the actual users receive the test emails.

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Get Classy with Drupal 8

By Michael Silverman on Apr 13, 2015 9:34:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 13, 2015 9:34:00 AM

If you have themed in Drupal 7, you are probably familiar with the excessive markup that page templates and views spit out. Drupal 8 is going to eliminate divitis and classitis, by introducing a clean and sensible base theme 'classy'. You can find it in /core/theme/classy. On top of that, the entire markup is now in HTML5. 

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Keeping the Build Alive: Drush Makefiles

By Rich Lawson on Mar 26, 2015 9:11:00 AM

By Rich Lawson on Mar 26, 2015 9:11:00 AM

Development Versions of Contributed Modules in Drush Makefiles

An Introduction to Drush Make

Drush make is an extension toDrush that downloads resources from Drupal.org and other specified locations for building out a Drupal codebase. Used in combination with an installation profile, Drush is great for continuous integration or for quickly deploying a Drupal platform that is essentially based on a template.

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When Drupal MidCamp Became MADCamp

By Michael Silverman on Mar 25, 2015 4:20:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 25, 2015 4:20:00 PM

This past weekend the Duo team attended the second MidCamp in Chicago. The 2015 MidCamp camp took place at The University of Illinois at Chicago's student center and drew about 350 total attendees. Duo was a Silver level sponsor as well as had 12 team members who attended. 

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Drupal MidCamp 2015: Duo Consulting to Sponsor and Attend

By Michael Silverman on Mar 19, 2015 5:28:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 19, 2015 5:28:00 PM

Midwest Drupal Camp 2015 in Chicago!

March 19-22, 2015 the Duo Team will be at MidCamp (also known as the Midwest Area DrupalCamp) at the UIC Student Center.

MidCamp is an annual event in Chicago where people who use and support Drupal can come together. The event is put together by volunteers from the Drupal community and includes sessions, training and keynotes all wrapping up with sprints on Sunday. It's a great opportunity for the Duo team, and anyone interested in Drupal, to increase their Drupal knowledge through training, networking and more. 

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Master Your Drupal Markup with Panels Layouts

By Ryan Beach on Mar 17, 2015 8:01:00 AM

By Ryan Beach on Mar 17, 2015 8:01:00 AM

Panels is an awesome system for building page layouts, especially when combined with panelizer to create reusable layout and content patterns for nodes and entities.

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You Can't Know Everything About Drupal, and That's Okay

By Michael Silverman on Mar 11, 2015 8:37:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 11, 2015 8:37:00 AM

It's Not About Knowing Everything Drupal - It's About Knowing Where to Look

The group of people in the world that can say they truly know everything about Drupal is likely very small. There are so many facets to Drupal, that it's not practical for a single person to know it all and still focus the majority of his or her professional life building Drupal sites. And that's okay. I've been around the Drupal world long enough to know that I won't know it all.

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Marketing with Context: Seeing Things in a Different Light

By Michael Silverman on Feb 27, 2015 2:57:44 PM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 27, 2015 2:57:44 PM

We don't see things as they are we see things as we are

How many times have we all heard this Anaïs Nin quote? Or this similar saying:

“Beauty is no quality in things themselves: It exists merely in the mind which contemplates them; and each mind perceives a different beauty.” 
― David Hume, Of the Standard of Taste and Other Essays

The way you perceive something, based on your personal context, can be completely different than someone else. A simple conversation with a friend can turn into an argument because the person talking to you may not have known you were already in a bad mood.

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How to Set SMART Marketing Goals

By Michael Silverman on Feb 23, 2015 9:08:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 23, 2015 9:08:00 AM

When setting goals for your marketing they need to be SMART. What do I mean? SMART is an acronym that stands for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. Essentially, setting SMART goals means putting specific numbers in your goals that have a deadline attached to them. All too often we hide behind vanity metrics and words that sound nice like "engagement" and "synergy." But tell me - how does one measure synergy? Plus, your goals should be relevant to your business and not just whatever metrics you feel like measuring that month. So, let's dive in.

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Should You Fire Your Website?

By Michael Silverman on Feb 18, 2015 8:30:14 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 18, 2015 8:30:14 AM

Your website may not be performing quite as well as you want it to. However, your website may or may not be to blame. It could be that you need to make some changes. Or, it could be that it's time to part ways with your current website and start with something new. So how do you decide what's best? 

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Top 3 Reasons Your Website Isn't Generating Enough Leads

By Michael Silverman on Feb 16, 2015 8:37:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 16, 2015 8:37:00 AM

Just because your website isn’t pulling in the leads you’re hoping for doesn’t mean you should give up. There are steps you can take to improve the conversion rates of your site. Most sites that aren’t generating leads have a few big issues in common. So here they are, in no particular order, the top 3 reasons your website may not be generating enough leads:

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3 Outsourcing Myths That Just Aren't True

By Michael Silverman on Feb 10, 2015 4:50:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 10, 2015 4:50:00 PM

Consistently producing enough high-quality content is a challenge for most marketers. Companies are increasing budgets for content and realizing that content creation is no longer a part time job or a task fit for an intern. Successful marketing requires content creators who are dedicated to publishing keyword oriented, quality content that is relevant to a specific audience and their questions and concerns.

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Beware These Web Design Company Red Flags

By Michael Silverman on Jan 20, 2015 10:12:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 20, 2015 10:12:00 AM

You've been researching and interviewing web design firms for months trying to find the right fit. Or maybe you've just begun your search. Either way, whenever you choose a web design company, there are some red flags you need to be on the lookout for. These are the things that, despite great preparation and research, could still mean big risks for your website. So what are these red flags? 

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Let's Abandon Tracking ROI of Social Media in 2015

By Michael Silverman on Jan 14, 2015 8:49:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 14, 2015 8:49:00 AM

Forget about ROI?? What? Yes, I really said that.

Of course I'm not saying that measuring your social media investment isn't important. What I am saying here is that what really matters is the ROE of social media. ROE: Return on Effort. We can't expect to be successful on social channels if we don't put in the necessary effort. For years there has been fear of not being able to track the ROI of social. However, unless you're just dumping dollars into strategy-less ads on social, it's really more about the effort you put in, not the dollars. 

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A Development Process to Fit the Consulting Model

By Michael Silverman on Jan 8, 2015 7:30:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 8, 2015 7:30:00 AM

Agile? Waterfall? Our process falls somewhere in between. 

From the second we start a new project with a client we have to be conscious of both our time and theirs. That's why, over the past few months, Duo has been working on a new process for our team. This new process, which lies somewhere between Agile and Waterfall, is largely focused on being more strategic and trying to get the absolute best use of our time and the client's time. 

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Acquia, Symfony, Inbound, Oh My! A 2014 Conference Review

By Michael Silverman on Dec 29, 2014 7:30:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 29, 2014 7:30:00 AM

2014 Included a Handful of Great Events for the Duo Consulting Team

These events brought us together with other developers, marketers, and talented professionals in our industry. We had fun, we learned a lot, and we brought back great ideas to apply to projects for our great customers. Here's a look at a few of the most recent conferences attended by Duo team members as well as a look back at some from earlier in the year.

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Duo Consulting Recognized by Clutch as a Leading Web Design & Developer Firm in Chicago

By Michael Silverman on Dec 17, 2014 11:50:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 17, 2014 11:50:00 AM

The Research Firm Clutch has Published Their Analysis of Leading Web Designers & Developers in Chicago 

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4 Things More Important Than Writing Great Content

By Michael Silverman on Dec 16, 2014 7:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 16, 2014 7:00:00 AM

Great Content Can No Longer Stand Alone

Build it and they will come, right? Wrong. While creating great content to offer visitors to your site is important, it’s not enough to just write it and have it live somewhere on your website. So what can we do? Well, here are 4 things to start with that are just as important as, if not more important than writing great content.

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5 Visual Tools for Simplicity and Usability

By Michael Silverman on Dec 2, 2014 11:43:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 2, 2014 11:43:00 AM

Have you checked out our or blog post about streamlining your content creation process? If you have then you already know that great visuals can take a quality blog post to the next level. While content might be the most important part of content creation, the package it’s delivered in has a huge impact on how receptive your audience will be to your message.

In the last post we discussed one tool to streamline your visual asset creation process, but there are a lot of tools out there. Let’s take a look at five visual tools that we can’t imagine working without.

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Save Time with These 6 Editorial Calendar Tools

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2014 2:42:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2014 2:42:00 PM

If you saw our post about tools for streamlining your content creation then you already know how important an editorial calendar is to your internal content creation process. If not then you’re about to find out.

In the last post we discussed HubSpot’s editorial calendar as one option to better organize your content creation, but there are a lot of tools out there. Let’s take a look at six other tools, and examine what they have to offer, to help you better determine which tool is right for your process. Here are our 6 favorite editorial calendar tools we don’t know how we ever lived without.

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Keywords Aren't Dead, Really!

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2014 2:21:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2014 2:21:00 PM

What I’m about to say may come as a shock to you. Keywords aren’t dead. In fact, they’re an important part of any content marketing strategy. They’re also not the be-all end-all of marketing. A lot of people get caught up in the detail of keyword creation when what’s really important is making sure that you’re delivering great content to the people who need it. Keywords can help guide you along the way to accomplishing this goal.

We’re here with some tools to help you out with everything from keyword ideation to finding industry content that’s performing well on certain topics.

Find What’s Trending

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Tools for Streamlining Your Content Creation Process

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2014 1:59:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2014 1:59:00 PM

In addition to creating quality content that engages your users, any effective content creation process requires the ability to write content in a timely manner. Let’s face it, if you’re only able to churn out one blog post per month, you may not have the best process in place.

Thankfully, there are a ton of great tools out there that can help you produce high-quality, engaging content more efficiently. If you’re a new content marketer or an old pro looking to refine your content creation process take a look at some of your options for building the best process possible.

Editorial Calendars

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Thinking Forward with Modular Design

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2014 1:37:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2014 1:37:00 PM

Modular design is an approach to web development and design that separates functionalities of a website into standalone modules that fit together to meet the functional and non-functional requirements of the business and users.

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A Practical Look at Mobile First Design

By Michael Silverman on Sep 23, 2014 2:27:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 23, 2014 2:27:00 PM

Our interaction design team (IxD) is always trying to improve. Whether it’s through weekly meetings like “Get Awesome” where we talk about new industry trends or by constantly retooling our process to be more efficient, we are always trying to make the team work the best it can.

Recently we’ve been talking about implementing mobile first design in our process as a more efficient way to think about design.

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Part 2 - An Event Apart: The Dark Side of Design

By Michael Silverman on Sep 10, 2014 11:03:50 AM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 10, 2014 11:03:50 AM

“Designers stand at the doorway of what gets put into the world.” - Mike Monteiro

Day two brought more great sessions about design, but with a twist. One talk in particular caught my attention as it focused on the real world implications of design. And these implications weren’t always positive.

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Doubling Down: Make What Works, Work For You

By Michael Silverman on Sep 9, 2014 12:44:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 9, 2014 12:44:00 PM

Last week I wrote about my first experience with Chicago’s Hubspot User Group (HUG), and how you can get involved. As I mentioned these meetups consist of a meet and greet before hand, a presentation about new trends in the industry, and a small networking event afterwards. Today, I want to walk you through one of the high level takeaways from last weeks HUG, the double down.

What does it mean to double down?

The idea is simple. If something is working, keep doing it. In fact, if something is working, you should be doing it more! Doubling down is all about making what works work to its greatest capacity. Of course this is easier said than done, so let’s look at some examples.

Let’s say you’re a small B to C business offering bike repairs in Chicago. You’re business is growing, and you want to make the most of your marketing efforts, so you’ve decided to invest in a marketing software like Hubspot. Almost immediately you realize that most of your contacts are coming to you through Social Media efforts. Doubling Down means that rather than assuming social media is tapped out and working to its full potential you should double your focus on social media and see just how many more contacts you can get through that marketing channel.

Doubling down is as much about what to do as what not to do. Don’t get caught up in what isn’t working. This leads some people to spend a lot of wasted time and effort making small gains in an area that don’t come naturally to their business. Instead you should focus first one what is working and make sure you’re making the most out of those channels. Maybe you see that email marketing is doing really well, while organic searches aren’t yielding any contacts. Rather than trying to up your SEO by jamming in a bunch of keywords, you should consider doubling your email efforts. Maybe send two emails a month instead of just one newsletter. Maybe focus on putting relevant lists into email heavy workflows that provide relevant content to your contacts. Brainstorm any way you can make more use of emails. Then execute.

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At the Intersection of Tech, UX Design & Digital Marketing

By Michael Silverman on Sep 5, 2014 10:24:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 5, 2014 10:24:00 AM

A great business needs a great website. That’s the Duo motto, and that’s what I've learned in over 20 years in the industry. But there are still a lot of people out there who view their website more as an obligation than an opportunity. As more and more business moves to the web, having a website is no longer an option, and what you do online can have a huge impact on how your business performs.

I’m here to talk about how a site can be your best business and marketing tool, but this takes more than great technology, more than a sophisticated user experience, and more than an email marketing strategy. To make the most of your site you have to bring these three areas together to have a real impact on your business.

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How You can Prepare for Drupal 8

By Michael Silverman on Aug 28, 2014 10:07:50 AM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 28, 2014 10:07:50 AM

The first time I built a site in drupal 7, I built it using techniques I knew from drupal 6. In hindsight that made for a crappy drupal 7 site, even though it was built with drupal 6 methods. The same thing might occur when drupal 8 happens, you can’t use past techniques to build new versions of site.

We all know it’s coming. Announced at DrupalCon Denver in 2012, Drupal 8 is on its way, and smart developers are asking what they can do to prepare.  Although there are still a lot of unknowns,  here is a list of three steps developers, who aren’t core contributor but who regularly build Drupal sites, can take to prepare for the change.

1. Get a good book on Symfony

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Why You Need Discovery for UX and Inbound Marketing

By Michael Silverman on Aug 14, 2014 11:38:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 14, 2014 11:38:00 AM

Usually, when a client comes in looking to trim their budget they suggest skipping the discoveryphase. They say that they have already done their research, that they know what their customers are looking for, and that the time and costs associated just aren’t worth it. It’s understandable. Discovery can be a hard thing to quantify, especially because the biggest deliverable is a new understanding of what a website needs rather than a product.

The problem with this is that companies often don’t do research from the best point of view. They may be biased by company dynamic and swayed by internal stakeholders rather than looking at what their customers need. The benefit of bringing in an external expert to consult with is the objectivity and specificity of experience they bring with them. This is one of the reasons we always recommend a discovery phase at the beginning of any project.

But how exactly does Discovery impact both UX and Inbound?

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4 Drupal Drawbacks Debunked

By Michael Silverman on Aug 7, 2014 11:09:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 7, 2014 11:09:00 AM

Like any software Drupal isn’t perfect, that’s why we’re currently on Drupal 7 and not Drupal 1. The problems critics often point to when talking about Drupal however, are often not the insurmountable obstacles they’d like you to think. The amazing thing about working in an open source platform with a community of contributors is that there are few problems that can’t be solved.

A week ago we found a blog post that outlined some of the often critiqued aspects of Drupal and why they shouldn’t stop you from choosing Drupal for your new site or site rebuild. So here they are four examples of how Drupal has overcome obstacles.

1. Drupal Uses Too Much Memory

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The Role of Discovery in UX Design and Inbound Marketing

By Molly Lee on Aug 7, 2014 10:44:00 AM

By Molly Lee on Aug 7, 2014 10:44:00 AM

Why is Discovery so essential to UX Designers and Inbound Marketers alike? Molly Lee, Senior UX Strategist and Ariel Upton, Marketing Manager swap stories on the importance of a well-executed Discovery engagement.

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Similar, Not The Same: Webinars, Google Hangouts on Air, YouTube Live Events

By Michael Silverman on Jun 30, 2014 2:43:03 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 30, 2014 2:43:03 PM

It’s on the top of your marketing team’s to-do list: make more videos.

If you’re looking to launch a video marketing campaign but don’t know where to start, I hear you! From a technology standpoint, creating video content has never been more accessible. But with all of the options available, how can you be sure you’re picking a strategy that won’t be defunct by the time you start your next shoot?  If you’re searching the pros and cons of webinars vs. Google Hangouts on Air vs. Live Events and are still feeling a little lost, let me be of assistance.

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5 Common Misconceptions About Drupal

By Michael Silverman on May 22, 2014 3:03:01 PM

By Michael Silverman on May 22, 2014 3:03:01 PM

Last week Acquia hosted a webinar with Dries Buytaert, founder and lead developer of the Drupal CMS. The first part of the event focused on common misconceptions that decision makers have about Drupal when vetting the CMS. I want to reiterate Dries’ message and nullify some of the misconceptions floating around about Drupal.

Misconception #1: Drupal is only for “simple” sites like blogs.

Wrong. Unless you consider GE and NBC “simple” sites, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Drupal is a hybrid of an application and a framework and has the capacity and flexibility to build almost anything of varying complexities that you can imagine on the web.

50% of the top media and entertainment companies use Drupal. More than 130 nations around the world use Drupal. 7 of 8 top U.S. universities, including Harvard, Stanford, and Princeton, use Drupal.

Warner Music has built 300 completely custom artist experiences with Drupal. Managing 300 unique websites is no simple task. With Drupal they can manage their existing load and continuously launch new artists and bands at a rapid speed. 

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DIY: 10-Step SEO Audit

By Michael Silverman on May 21, 2014 12:18:29 PM

By Michael Silverman on May 21, 2014 12:18:29 PM

Your website is your #1 employee. Your website is always on the clock, but that doesn't mean the work it's doing is necessarily paying off. If your site isn't ranking, your efforts could be suffering. How can you be sure your SEO strategies are in play and working?

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[INFOGRAPHIC] Why Your Website Needs Inbound Marketing

By Michael Silverman on May 8, 2014 11:11:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 8, 2014 11:11:00 AM

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Online Shopping for the Optimal User Experience

By Michael Silverman on Apr 23, 2014 2:27:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 23, 2014 2:27:00 PM

The Role UX Should be Playing in eCommerce

Companies need to gain a new perspective of eCommerce, turning their primary focus away from revenue and toward their users’ experience. 
Topics: Marketing
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How to Host a Webinar 101

By Michael Silverman on Mar 29, 2014 11:12:18 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 29, 2014 11:12:18 AM

We're hosting our first webinar "Better Websites by Design" on April 30, 2014.
Why webinars? Why now? Over the past year we have spent a lot of time planning and hosting our @DUO events focused on digital marketing, development, and design in our Chicago office.
Time and time again we get regretful emails from registrants the day of the event that look something like this: I'm so sorry I can't make the event tonight because of x,y,z...any chance you will share the event slides?"
We're going a step further. We realize that people are busy. Your lives, or your geographic location, may prevent you from coming to an @DUO event. Although we believe that nothing can replace that face-to-face interaction, webinars come in at as a close-second. 

Follow along as we share our insights and lessons learned on planning, promoting, and executing a successful webinar in this three-part series. 

How to Host a Webinar 101: Getting Started

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12 Drupal Modules for Small Businesses

By Michael Silverman on Mar 18, 2014 2:31:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 18, 2014 2:31:00 PM

We asked our developers to recommend the simplest, most intuitive and most effective modules Drupal has to offer. Check out the 12 modules that they believe will make a small business owner manage a website like a seasoned veteran.  

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Drupal 6 to Drupal 7: How to Retain IDs - Part Three

By Michael Silverman on Mar 13, 2014 1:37:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 13, 2014 1:37:00 PM

One of our clients is in the process of migrating from Drupal 6 to 7. One of the requirements for this migration is to retain the same IDs from the previous version of Drupal. In Part 3 of this series I will outline the Keys to Success I learned during the migration. Did you miss post #1 or #2? Click back to set the scene.

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Drupal 6 to Drupal 7: How to Retain IDs - Part Two

By Michael Silverman on Mar 10, 2014 1:10:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 10, 2014 1:10:00 PM

Why is retaining the same IDs important when upgrading Drupal 6 to Drupal 7?

One of our clients is in the process of migrating from Drupal 6 to 7. One of the requirements for this migration is to retain the same IDs from the previous version of Drupal. In Part Two of this series I will detail the 5 steps I took to complete the migration. Did you miss post #1? Click back to set the scene

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Drupal 6 to Drupal 7: How to Retain IDs - Part One

By Michael Silverman on Mar 6, 2014 3:13:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 6, 2014 3:13:00 PM

Why is retaining the same IDs important when upgrading Drupal 6 to 7?

One of our clients is in the process of migrating from Drupal 6 to 7. One of the requirements for this migration is to retain the same IDs from the previous version of Drupal. In part one I will set the scene for this migration by outlining the primary requirements of the project.  

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5 Link Etiquette Tips for Beginning Bloggers

By Michael Silverman on Feb 20, 2014 1:49:33 PM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 20, 2014 1:49:33 PM

To the Inbound Marketer, links are as valuable as gold. 

They drive interaction, increase credibility and accelerate SEO. That is, when they’re used correctly.Without proper link etiquette, search engines will refuse to help a site be found. Bad link etiquette can negate your blogging efforts and prevent your customers from finding your website. To avoid this pitfall, follow these rules of link etiquette to help your website become the belle of the ball. 

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5 Reasons You Need A Responsive Website

By Ryan Beach on Jan 29, 2014 2:30:43 PM

By Ryan Beach on Jan 29, 2014 2:30:43 PM

When speaking to technology and the technoculture that grows with it, there are two lines. The first is a line where, once a new technology has gained critical mass, society can no longer return to its previous technological state. In Shaping Things, Bruce Sterling refers to this line as the Line of No Return.

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4 Ways to Display Content On Your Website

By Michael Silverman on Jan 17, 2014 2:35:37 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 17, 2014 2:35:37 PM

How Should I Say It? 4 Ways to Display Content in your Site Structure

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Web Design Trends in 2014

By Michael Silverman on Dec 31, 2013 9:05:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 31, 2013 9:05:00 AM

When it comes to web design trends, what can you expect in 2014?
 

It’s that rare time of year where reflection of what has happened and anticipation for what’s to come exist in perfect balance. With less than 24 hours remaining in 2013, it’s hard not to jump ahead and visualize what our lives on the World Wide Web will look like in 2014.

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Three Design Trends that are Challenging the “Pixel Perfect” Straw Man

By Michael Silverman on Dec 4, 2013 11:20:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 4, 2013 11:20:00 AM

 

 

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Is Drupal an Application or a Framework?

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2013 11:43:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 25, 2013 11:43:00 AM

Let me preface this post with the following:
I am not a Drupal developer.
I do however spend a majority of my day surrounded by six highly talented Drupal Architects who are generous with their wisdom and teach me about the platform on a daily basis.

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Getting Sass(y) With Client Handoffs

By Michael Silverman on Oct 9, 2013 10:29:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Oct 9, 2013 10:29:00 AM

If you are unfamiliar with Sass:
I recommend you check out our very own Brian Krall’s
introductory post on Sass and Compass before reading on.

Imagine this scenario:

Your little brother’s birthday is coming up, and you’ve decided to make him his own custom screen-printed t-shirt. Thankfully, due to your extensive art education, you know how to print impeccable shirts in the preferred method. You come up with your design, do the color separations, burn the screens, and print a fantastic 3-color masterpiece. On the big day, you hand your brother his gift, and he decides that he wants the letters to be red instead of white. He goes to his room, grabs a big red Sharpie, and haphazardly scribbles all over your handiwork.
Unhappy with the result, he hands you back the shirt and tells you that it doesn’t look right, and that you need to fix it. Little brothers are the worst.

For better or for worse, making the choice to commit to a particular craft ultimately means that you will have to retain a certain bit of continuity once it leaves your hands, whether the recipient is an awful hypothetical sibling, or an otherwise wonderful client that might not know or care about the craft involved in the delivered result.

For the better part of the last year, Duo has been using Sass as our CSS preprocessor of choice, to great effect. We love its efficiencies, its structure, and how it motivates us to be better-organized coders. Despite our love affair, our front end team is running into a dilemma that has plagued back end developers for years: how do we manage beautifully crafted code with a client who is going to want to tinker, and even more difficult, what happens when the client breaks our toys and hands us back the pieces and asks us to fix it?

There is so little about this particular question that the best intel I was able to dig up is an interesting twitter conversation between designer Scott Kellum and front end dev, Patrick Fulton:

At this point, we’ve only had to do a few handoffs with sites coded in Sass, but in our experiences so far, Scott’s point seems to be the exception, rather than the rule. Clients that have the inclination to tinker are likely versed in basic CSS, and may be averse to learning a new technology that is like CSS but might not seem ‘worth it’ for them to learn when they can just bypass the process and get into the compiled files, which can cause major headaches in the future. Although Duo is in the process of working out this balance ourselves, we have some general recommendations for how to approach this issue.

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How to Implement an Internal Social Network

By Michael Silverman on Oct 1, 2013 9:03:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Oct 1, 2013 9:03:00 PM

You’re about to travel the road from conception to implementation of your internal social network. They didn’t teach you how to do this in school.  Perhaps someone has done this before and you can learn from their experience. 

Fortunately, KPMG has shared their story. This project is really very much a work in progress. Their deployment of an internal social network was in early 2013. The project began in 2011. The scent is fresh; you should follow it.

The KPMG Hub

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5 Reasons Enterprise Marketers Will Love Drupal 8

By Michael Silverman on Sep 12, 2013 1:50:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 12, 2013 1:50:00 PM

Drupal 8’s power, ease of use, and enterprise level technology make it the go-to platform for enterprise marketers. 

​Drupal 8 is more than a new software iteration, it's a dramatic change for both code and user experience. Here's what enterprise marketers can expect: updated software, mobile technologies, easy content management, content delivery independent of device, and an emphasis on performance.

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4 Ways to Treat People Like People

By Michael Silverman on Aug 30, 2013 3:24:02 PM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 30, 2013 3:24:02 PM

Stop acting like strangers. Start acting like people.

If you spent 72 hours of your life last week at the Inbound Marketing Conference in Boston, Massachusetts you saw this message on the heather gray t-shirts of HubSpot employees left and right.

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Twitter and your access.log

By Michael Silverman on Aug 9, 2013 9:31:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 9, 2013 9:31:00 AM

There's a post over at Daring Fireball talking about how Twitter clients should handle referrals when you click a link in them. Tim Bray and John Gruber are arguing that a Twitter client should put information about the Twitter message that was followed to reach the link in question. I can see why they'd want this information, but it goes against the HTTP spec. Referral information is only supposed to be provided when you move from one page to another inside the same browser, and it's always up to the browser to send this information. You can even turn it off completely if you'd like.

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First Impressions of Open Atrium 2.0

By Michael Silverman on Aug 7, 2013 1:54:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 7, 2013 1:54:00 PM

We at Duo recently had the opportunity to attend the Open Atrium Beta Webinar and later got to play around with the latest version of Open Atrium 2.0.

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Environment Variables, Drush and Settings.php

By Michael Silverman on Aug 5, 2013 1:58:09 PM

By Michael Silverman on Aug 5, 2013 1:58:09 PM

I believe we have all heard that we should not use $_SERVER variables because there is no guarantee it will be right. After some troubleshooting, I have found this to be true for $_SERVER["DOCUMENT_ROOT"] while looking up the server root for exporting files on cron. 

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Drupal Site Audit – Best Practices, Readiness and Performance

By Michael Silverman on Jul 30, 2013 2:04:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 30, 2013 2:04:00 PM

What is a Drupal Site Audit

A Drupal site audit is a process to establish a clear baseline about how a Drupal website is built and configured and how it functions. The site audit provides the foundation for knowing what is required to get your site to meet its business objectives. Unless a site is exceptionally well-documented, current and accurate, the audit is necessary before additional work is done to the site by a developer other than the one that built it. This avoids creating new problems on top of any that may already exist.

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Discovering Foundation For Drupal

By Michael Silverman on Jul 19, 2013 1:48:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 19, 2013 1:48:00 PM

“Stop Thinking in Pages. Start Thinking in Systems.” - Jeremy Keith

For the past year, we have been using a starter kit that allows you to work with Sass and Compass, including 960gs fluid grids, a core that is built with HTML5, and a responsive layout.  It’s a Drupal project called Sasson and it serves it’s purpose well.  As we started looking to improve our workflow and design in the browser, we were less interested in a base starter kit and more interested in a tool that would allow us to rapidly prototype and create a design system that can be reused throughout the project, while still capitalizing on our core techniques. 

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What To Do When It All Goes Wrong: Using the Try/Catch Structure in Drupal Coding

By Michael Silverman on Jul 15, 2013 3:36:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 15, 2013 3:36:00 PM

One of the great things about PHP is that it’s so simple, anyone with a text editor and a book can start programming. In fact, I’m convinced that open source’s most successful projects grew precisely because PHP’s relatively loose coding structure let the average Joe skip the details and dive right in.

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Drupal 8 a Few New Hooks

By Michael Silverman on Jul 9, 2013 10:07:22 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 9, 2013 10:07:22 AM

I spent some time looking over the hooks available in Drupal 8’s api, and found a few gems.

Admin Paths

Admin Paths allows you to define any path as part of the site admin. Say you have a settings page for your module ‘mymodule/settings’, setting this as admin will allow you to use the admin theme for the page

function hook_admin_paths() {
  $paths = array(
    'mymodule/settings' => TRUE,
  );
  return $paths;
}
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Five Ways to Make Your Business More Transparent – Second in a Series

By Michael Silverman on Jul 3, 2013 10:42:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 3, 2013 10:42:00 AM

How Execs Can Inspire Trust, Engagement and Loyalty by Building A More Open Business

This is the second in a series of 5 blog posts where we are explore the business approaches that make your business more transparent. In the spirit of our own transparency, we’re sharing Duo’s experience in building it's own open and transparent culture.

Topics: Marketing
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The Science of Responsive: Part 3 - Fluid Grids

By Michael Silverman on Jun 20, 2013 1:46:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 20, 2013 1:46:00 PM

In the first two parts of the series I explained how Responsive Web Design works, with introductions to media queries and fluid images. Today I will examine the third piece of the puzzle needed to create a responsive layout.

The web, inherently works how a responsive site should work at its most basic level. Resizing a paragraph of text in a browser will appropriately reformat the text to fit in your browser window. It is when we start setting fixed widths on containers and other elements that it stops acting that way. That’s where the importance of using fluid grids to build your layout comes in.

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4 Missing Modules for New Drupal Developers

By Michael Silverman on Jun 11, 2013 2:27:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 11, 2013 2:27:00 PM

There is a module for that. No, seriously. There is a module for that.

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Drupal 8 and Symfony in Layman's Terms

By Michael Silverman on Jun 7, 2013 1:59:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 7, 2013 1:59:00 PM

You may have heard some things about Drupal’s upcoming use of the Symfony framework starting with the launch of Drupal 8. The biggest change to the Drupal 8 platform is that it includes many aspects of Symfony, another PHP based frameowrk for web application development. Symfony uses object oriented programing (OOP) and the introduction of Symfony components has simplified working with Drupal 8. If there's only one thing you should prepare for in Drupal 8, it's Drupal's new partnership with Symfony.

WHAT IS SYMFONY AND HOW IS IT DIFFERENT FROM DRUPAL?

Like Drupal, Symfony is a PHP framework meant to help people build websites while cutting down on reptitive coding tasks. Both Drupal and Symfony are known as “web frameworks," similar to the way the operating system of your computer is the framework for the various applications you use. However, they differ in a few crucial ways.

One of the biggest differences between the Drupal and Symfony frameworks lies in Drupal’s focus on the Content Management System (CMS). A CMS is an application that provides an easy and organized way for site managers and authors to add, edit and update content on a website, without the need to know web programming languages.

Drupal is very much a CMS, and the Drupal framework is the glue that keeps each of its elements bound together. These elements include core and contributed modules such as block, view, panels and themes.

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Is There a Better Alternative to Mobile Phone App Development?

By Michael Silverman on Jun 2, 2013 10:39:57 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jun 2, 2013 10:39:57 PM

In the mid-1990s, companies were racing to the Internet in droves. While it would still be a few years before Internet access became ubiquitous, having a website quickly became a mark of prestige and created a perception of technological savvy for many businesses. In the race to get online, many entrepreneurs and major corporations made decisions that seem almost unbelievable today.

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Diving into Drupal Commons 3: Email Digests

By Michael Silverman on May 15, 2013 8:47:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 15, 2013 8:47:00 AM

So far we're still loving Drupal Commons 3. Alas... no email content digests are to be found.

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The Science of Responsive Design: Part 2- Fluid Images

By Michael Silverman on May 2, 2013 9:00:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on May 2, 2013 9:00:00 AM

This is an introduction to how images scale when building a site with a responsive approach. With everything built on a flexible grid, images need to fall in line and be sized according to percentages so they scale along with the browser window.

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Why User Experience Is A Critical Element of Growth Hacking

By Michael Silverman on Apr 26, 2013 9:25:54 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 26, 2013 9:25:54 AM

At the crossroads of marketing and engineering is growth hacking.

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Diving into Drupal Commons 3: The Status Message Box

By Michael Silverman on Apr 24, 2013 10:34:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 24, 2013 10:34:00 AM

We've been playing with Drupal Commons 3 and so far, we like what we see.

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The Power of Interactive Content Marketing

By Michael Silverman on Apr 16, 2013 3:53:05 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 16, 2013 3:53:05 AM

How Graphical, Video and Audio Content Supplement Spellbinding Marketing

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Using Web Analytics to Meet your Business Objectives

By Michael Silverman on Apr 16, 2013 3:32:08 AM

By Michael Silverman on Apr 16, 2013 3:32:08 AM

You’ve built your beautiful website. Now what?

You’ve completed Phase I of your website build. You’ve successfully launched your site (congratulations, my friend!). It’s gorgeous. It’s got lots of bells and whistles and you have showed everyone what it looks like on your mobile device (high-five responsive design!). You’ve done what you needed to do to establish a presence on the web. But is your new website working for you? Have you built it with your target audience in mind? Is it functioning in a way that benefits your business and your bottom line? Since your website is truly never done, it’s time to begin Phase II of your tenure online. 
It’s time to understand how people are using your site and how this information can improve your end-user’s experience. 
Topics: Marketing
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VCard Field Drupal Module Liberates Contact Information

By Michael Silverman on Mar 22, 2013 10:49:05 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 22, 2013 10:49:05 AM

When your site contains public facing bios or personal profiles you want a way for people to get the contact information available. Vcard is one of the quickest ways to do this. This is where the VCard Field Module comes in.

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Drupal 7 Changes the Project Estimation Model

By Michael Silverman on Mar 18, 2013 9:56:07 AM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 18, 2013 9:56:07 AM

Over the last several years we focused considerable effort on refining and perfecting our project estimation process. Providing an accurate project estimate is essential to building an accurate budget expectation for our clients as well as a time estimate from which our project managers could manage each project and the staff resources required to get the job completed.

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Law Firms Dip Toes Into Enterprise Social Networks

By Michael Silverman on Feb 6, 2013 10:29:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 6, 2013 10:29:00 AM

Although Gartner Research anticipates that half of large organizations will have “internal, Facebook-like social networks” by 2016, my conjecture is that most professional service firms will be in the other half.  That’s unfortunate because they have so much to gain that they should be at the head of the line. The use cases for law firms in particular are just that compelling.

Alumni Networks

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Drupal Developer Tip: Make Forms Leaner, Faster With $form_state

By Michael Silverman on Jan 22, 2013 9:38:43 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 22, 2013 9:38:43 AM

If you find yourself writing a custom form using the Form API and drupal_get_form in Drupal 7, you can make your form leaner and faster to render by NOT putting unnecessary hidden fields in the form. Rather you can use $form_state to store your 'hidden' values to pass along for form validation and processing.  When you use hidden fields, you are adding this information to the HTML output which makes the page slower to render in the user's browser.

Another benefit of using $form_state to store hidden data is that sometimes you want to pass information to the form submit function without the user being able to see it using the prying eyes of 'View Source'.

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Should Large Companies Invest in Enterprise Social Networks?

By Michael Silverman on Dec 17, 2012 8:00:21 AM

By Michael Silverman on Dec 17, 2012 8:00:21 AM

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Using Amazon's SES with Postfix as a Smarthost Forwarder

By Michael Silverman on Jan 30, 2012 3:56:37 PM

By Michael Silverman on Jan 30, 2012 3:56:37 PM

One of the challenges of running web servers "in the cloud" is that they can have somewhat random IP addresses assigned to them. This can be an advantage if you're a spammer intent on renting an IP address for a few hours to blast a few thousand emails from. As a result, many of the IP addresses associated with Amazon's EC2 instances are already flagged as spam-generators, even though the actual spam generator has moved on. So how can we send legitimate email from our web server if it's been flagged around the world as a spammer? The answer is to use Amazon's Simple Email Service (SES) to send the actual mail.

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Multiple profiles in Google Chrome for OS X

By Michael Silverman on Mar 13, 2011 10:06:00 PM

By Michael Silverman on Mar 13, 2011 10:06:00 PM

December 20th, 2011 Update: The latest version of Chrome for OS X (v16) has made profiles available without having to jump through weird hoops. Just go into Preferences, Personal Stuff and there's an option to enable profiles for multiple users. Each profile can have separate settings for Sync, Extensions and Themes to help you tell them apart.

As the world moves more and more toward cloud-based services such as Gmail and Basecamp, you may find yourself in a situation where your personal accounts and your work accounts start to conflict with each other.  Here at Duo we definitely see this when working with Google Documents.  Clearing your cookies will solve the problem temporarily, but it requires you to log in again and eventually the problem will return. One solution is to use different profiles for your work and personal information. This has always been pretty easy in Firefox and the Windows version of Chrome isn't too hard, either. Under OS X it's a bit trickier.

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Amazon RDS Cloudwatch Statistics in Munin

By Michael Silverman on Feb 18, 2011 2:50:19 PM

By Michael Silverman on Feb 18, 2011 2:50:19 PM

As Duo increases its reliance on cloud-based hosting solutions, we're trying to keep our management tools as consistent and centrally located as possible. We use an open source program named Munin to keep track of historical statistics on our various serverss

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Tips to Migrate to Drupal from Microsoft SQL Server

By Michael Silverman on Nov 19, 2010 1:30:51 AM

By Michael Silverman on Nov 19, 2010 1:30:51 AM

For almost any site, migrating old content into a new site can be a difficult and painful process -- and the more content, the more painful that process can be. We have recently completed the migration for a client Scranton Gillette Communications new Drupal website, one involving lots of content, with much of it being inter-related content. Given the volume and complexities involved, manual migration was not an option. What follows is our experience , which we think will be useful for others migrating old content into new Drupal sites.

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Practice Safe XSS

By Michael Silverman on Oct 31, 2008 7:40:17 PM

By Michael Silverman on Oct 31, 2008 7:40:17 PM

Hacking, cracking, and codejacking have exploited application vulnerabilities from the time the earliest programmers wrote their first "Hello World".  In the past, only application developers were vulnerable to such attacks. The dynamic web brings these attacks into the domain of the common website, as more contemporary sites use a database to drive their content.

In the early 2000s, common websites were composed of several static HTML pages, and only programmers (and wealthy corporations) could enjoy the luxury of a database-driven content management system (CMS). When I wanted a database-driven site, I had to build one myself using PHP and MySQL. Sure, there were bulletin board systems (now referred to as forums), wikis, and web site building applications, but their use was nowhere near as popular as today.

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Sunset on a CMS - Serena Collage

By Michael Silverman on Sep 30, 2008 9:11:38 PM

By Michael Silverman on Sep 30, 2008 9:11:38 PM

What do you do when your web content engine, while aging gracefully, indicates to you that it's ready for the rocking chair on the porch? Serena Collage had an internal communication leak to a few message boards, such as the Collage Higher Ed Yahoo Group and their own Support forums, that hints at the eventual sunsetting of the product.

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The Top Ten Mistakes of Web CMS Projects

By Michael Silverman on Jul 13, 2005 2:33:00 AM

By Michael Silverman on Jul 13, 2005 2:33:00 AM

Maybe you are beginning to think about developing a Content Management System (CMS) for your organization's website. You're probably wondering how to improve the chances of a successful outcome, considering the large investment at stake. Avoiding mistakes such as making decisions by committee, failing to create a project plan and more can save you a lot of time and pain.

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