57 Shoes that Inspire

Advertising Websites

1. Ads of the World
For all of you who love a good ad as much as a good movie, check out this site. If it didn’t already exist I was about to make it myself. It’s a great source for finding inspirational content, discussing your passion for advertising, finding jobs or other websites that may interest you.



 Screen shot 2011-12-13 at 4.39.57 PM
2. Coloribus
Specifically, check out the Ads By Brand. A lengthy list of brand names that link to a very organized archive of their past ads. Such as the Burger King ones below:


3. Ad Rants
Now I finally know who to vent to about the commercials that really bug me.



4. Ad Week

Keep up with the current events & politics of the advertising world.


Screen shot 2011-12-13 at 4.57.33 PM

5. Joe La Pompe

Interesting foriegn site that points out copycat ads


6. Ad Cracker

I haven’t fully checked this one out yet. It looks like it’s either a very helpful resource or someone’s outlet for making fun of advertising stereotypes. I’m guessing it’s the first. It seems to be the site I’ve been looking for since I often try to draw conclusions about successful marketing techniques by analyzing the content I feel is successful.

iPhone App In Depth Reactions: BigOven

amaliasdesign app review

As previously mentioned in the application appeal series, BigOven caught my eye with it’s interesting icon. The BigOven Application is the mobile version of which began with Steve Murch, aimed at solving the popular question “What can I make tonight?” Steve found my post and asked for more feedback, so today I’m going in depth on my reactions to this application and it’s features!

Why the Previews Look Out of Order:


Because they are! When you look at previews, you expect to see the application as it will be when you download it. Example: Home/Load Page, Main Navigation (maybe), & showcase of the best features.


Previews are the second most important thing you have as a marketing tool (#1 icons… #3 ratings). And honestly, I never read the descriptions. So previews sell me on the function & design of the app. So this is what I look for in previews (in order):
  • Great graphics?
  • Quality Pictures?
  • What can I do with the app?
  • Does it look easy to use? (or if it’s taking me too long to figure out the above question..< back)
  • Do I have something like it already? (<back)


If you go to BigOven on iTunes you will see the order they are currently in. I was totally astonished by the selection of preview images. I swear if they can change them I bet the downloads will increase noticeably. For example, why in the world would you lead with this first image when you can lead with the second!!!??? (which isn’t even one of their current previews!)
current preview #1
Ideal Preview #1


Lead with your brand! Lead with colorful FOOD! I believe the marketing key to BigOven is right there on the front page… “Make this tonight” Show us what amazing things we can make with BigOven.. and don’t lead with an image that looks like the default of every basic navigation based application. Not to mention some of the competition: Search for chicken…
Home/Load Screen: GREAT!
This is the most appealing part of the whole application. Big yummy appetizing pictures of food! A terrific call to action at the bottom saying “make this tonight.” It makes the app look like it has the ability to instantly gratify your craving for tasty food! Very intuitive and effective call to action. You get the visuals of what the app can deliver.


Ideal Preview #2

Get Ideas Menu: Decent

BigOven has a ton of great features. However, it is a little overwhelming when you first use the application to figure out what you’re actually supposed to use the app for.

1st Solution: “Search by Title” and “Advanced Search” could be simplified into one “Search” feature. As in, “Get Ideas”>”Search” and then from there, the option to switch from the current search to an advanced search. It would take up less navigation menu space and speed up the process of the viewer learning their way around the app. Decreasing the probability that users will close out of it before getting hooked.

2nd Solution: It’s a little wordy. “Get Ideas to Use Up Leftovers” could definitely just be “Use Up Leftovers.”

3rd Solution:


Take out the features that are Pro, and make it separate. I understand why they are where they are. I get it…. But for those who use the free version it gave me the feeling that the app was only meant to sell your Pro products. Which, basically all free apps do. But the constant reminder leaves me with a bitter taste. I look at this current way as the app saying “look what you don’t have… IF you pay us, then you can use it.” I actually deleted the app the first time because of it. Then there is the opposite way which is the customer saying “look how much I’ve used this free app! I can only imagine how awesome the pro version must be.” I’ve paid for stupid in-app features, simply because I am grateful for the product in general and have already benefited from it.


Here is a sample of what the navigation of Get Ideas could look like:


Menu with revisions


Help would replace “How Do I…?” Also, the Sign Out seems unnecessary. Why take the time to sign out if you can just exit out of the app and then return later without having to sign in again.


Maybe include an up ^ arrow to click to pull up the drop down and return to the first screen. It’s not totally intuitive to click the “Get Ideas” button a second time to close the drop down. Most features on the iPhone (like keyboard) function in a way that when you want them to disappear, you click on the background to close it. I tried clicking on the background (even with the very small border) about 5 times, before re-clicking “Get Ideas.”


And of course adjust the other menus accordingly. Extra space at the bottom of My Kitchen, could be used to advertise pro features.


Competitive Edge:


The features that separate BigOven from other recipe apps are: Use Leftovers, the ability to ADJUST SERVINGS!!! Hello!! That is major! It’s not at all highlighted in previews. Actually, not shown at all in previews! It needs to be emphasized, so not just a screen shot but also an overlay that draws the eye to the feature.


Also the What’s Cooking Around You feature which is pro only. This is a real shame. I don’t know what would be more addicting than seeing what your neighbors are cooking up in their homes. It would spark so many people sharing it with others because it makes that app more fun for everyone. It could potentially (at least) double the amount of downloads and probability that someone will upgrade the app. Simply because you need at least 2 people for one to see the other.


I get that it is one of the very intriguing pro features and that it probably is good bait for getting people to upgrade. Yet, I can only wonder how explosive it would be if it were available to everyone.


Just look at Turf Wars and it’s in-app downloads!



BigOven has the potential to become the ultimate social cooking network. AND bring in way more than just $15.99/person/year.


Searching for an application like BigOven:


Just like in SEO, you have to think like your target audience. When I first tried to search for BigOven in iTunes I searched for “food.” My instinct to search for a recipe related app was to search food in general. BigOven listed 136th as my iTunes search result for the keyword “food.” I wouldn’t have seen it at all if I was on my iPhone.


Eye On the Competition:

Jamie Oliver’s Twenty Minute Meals


Cooking Light


Food Network: My Recipes


Thanks for reading!
Just wanted to close by reminding you all that these are just my opinions. I have a lot of opinions. As always, I aim to express them in the most constructive way that I know how. I hope this will be of help to developers as well as Steve!