Thirty Days of Thanks – Thank Goodness for Good Design!!

Deconstructing Product DesignWe’re a Web Marketing company so of course one of the thirty things we are thankful for is good design!!

And we’re not just talking web design either… we’re talking about the design of all of your everyday things from the mundane to the magnificent.

To celebrate our love of design, we’ve got a super special giveaway for you this month!!

Our very own Search Engine Marketing Team Manager, Jonti Bolles, is a former professor of Architecture and we can testify that this gal loves her design… so much so that she was tapped to offer her expert design commentary in the recently published Deconstructing Product Design book by Will Lidwell and Gerry Manacsa.

Want a copy? Tell us what product you can’t live without and what about it’s design has made it integral to your life.

For inspiration check out my 5 Favorite Product Designs from the book!!

  1. the Motorola Razr V3: I had one of these babies. And yes I agree… the silver version pictured in the book was a step forward for phones, but the Pink Razr (with duct tape accents) that I personally owned was what I’d consider more of a giant leap. Razrs are risiliant little things and last for years!
  2. Aeron Armchair: I sit in a wannabe one of these (from Eurway) all day at work and I would never switch to a different chair. Commenter Carley H. Franklin calls it the “Rock-Star of the Seating World” and I wholeheartedly agree! Even if my chair is merely the pop-star version.
  3. the Chanel No. 5 Flacon: Ladies across the world will unanimously agree that this famed bottle of perfume is one of the iconic   symbols of all things womanly.
  4. POM Juice Bottle: I love pomegranates so by proxy I love this bottle. The design helps too.
  5. Glock G17 Semi-Automatic Pistol: I’m an Army Gal and so weapons of all shapes and sizes interest me. This one is a little smaller than the ones we used to tote around in basic training but I love that they featured it in a design book!!

And if you MUST have some Internet Inspiration, check out the Sew Crafty Houston Site or Gwen Bell’s Beautiful Blog. Both make me smile every time they pop open in my browser. I blame the monsters.

So one more time. How do you win this awesome book??

  1. Leave a comment below
  2. What product can’t you live without and what do you LOVE about its design
  3. We’ll pick a winner using the random integer generator on November 18
  4. Make sure you include a way for us to contact you when you win!!

It’s About to Get Awesome Up in Here! Contest Time!


Whoooo! Happy Monday, kids! After much work using our random integer counter thingy, we have an official winner of our contest that we never named!

The winner of three Dunny’s from the 2009 series is Erica Brotz! And I also promised the winner a sweet dinosaur drawing and a mix CD! So congrats, and enjoy your winnings, Erica. Be sure to send me your shipping address via Twitter or by emailing me: brandi (at) schipul (dot) com

And to everyone else, thanks for playing along! You all have killer toy collections.


If you were to walk around the Schipul office, you would spot a lot of toys and a lot of books.  Personally, I have a ton of toys, which is why I’m excited about the new 2009 Dunny series that dropped. The new designs are so rad that I broke down and bought–well, I bought a lot of them.

But hey, don’t judge me! My bad spending habits are your gain! I am giving away 3 unopened blind boxes from the 2009 series. That’s right, I am back with a new Schipul contest!


  1. In the comments below, link us to a picture of YOUR toy collection. Twitpic it, Flickr it, Picasa it, or whatever! Just send us a photo of your toy army.
  2. One entry per person.
  3. Deadline is October 9th, 2009, so make sure you get your entry in!


Tell me how pretty you think I am! Ok, just kidding. We will run our magical random integer counter thing and it will pick a commenter at random. We want to make sure everything is fair and integers are fun to play with.


Three unopened blind box Dunnys from the recently released 2009 series. If you’re nice, maybe a few extra items from our Schipul junk drawer.

And no need to take professional photos. Here are a few photos from around the office that I snapped using my iPhone:

Also, if you are interested in vinyl’s, be sure to check out these places:

  • Kidrobot‘ The leader in the field with storefronts set up in some major cities
  • My Plastic Heart‘ Yes, there is actually news about toys
  • FugitiveToys‘ One of my personal favorites to shop at. Great sales
  • Domy Books‘ For kids who are in Houston and Austin, support local!
  • Unklbrand‘ Another personal favorite! These guys have great figures and are pretty stellar.

Trend Tuesday: Talk to me and win a shirt!

Ah, the Blog Contest. Who doesn’t love a good blog contest. You may be think from the title and first words (and perhaps the by line) that this will be a bit of biting criticism calling out the blog industry for selling it self short. Or perhaps you think it is ridiculous self promotion for our current blog contest. Well, this is neither. It is the perspective of those two people who can agree on one thing: Blog Contests work!

One of the values at Schipul is Win/Win. This means that in an interaction or agreement or business-dealing, both sides walk away feeling like they have gained something. When we do work for our clients, we earn their business, and in turn they are provided with a service they need. The Blog Contest is, on most scales, a true example of Win/Win.

The Blog owner can be seeking PR, attention, an urge for traffic, or perhaps they just have extra stuff. To accomplish their goal, they can utilize traditional advertising, but this does not always help them reach their audience in a fun and interesting way. Even online advertising can be a poor fit for the audience or the budget. The flexibility of the Blog Contest allows you to give away pretty much anything, from a Wii Fit to netbooks to cat T’s.

From the reader perspective, generally very little is asked of you. Leave a funny comment, become a fan on facebook, mention something on twitter, etc. Much of the time your odds of winning are quite good compared to a business card fishbowl or a clearing house sweepstakes. And generally there is a high amount of transparency in seeing who wins. Unless a contest gets out of hand (see Wii Fit above), then the contest is contained to the community of people who read the blog, with maybe a few outsiders who are just around for the contest.

Even after a winner is announced, many great things have happened. Either a new reader has won something, which may keep them coming back as a reader, or an old reader has won something, which rewards them for being a part of the conversation. Attention is gained at a cost (like all advertising), but in this case the readers profit, not an Ad agency. Aside from some twitter contests which can be quite annoying (i.e. planet-orbiting-berry), the old-fashioned blog contest is a Win/Win event.

In all seriousness, these contests are really good for everyone and are turning into a great advancement in online economics. The scale of costs and attention help to create a happy event for all involved. A small giveaway creates a small burst of traffic, and giving away something large can create bigger waves on the internets. As a blog creator, you control the size and expense. As a blog contestant, you can control what contests you enter, and what is worth your time/attention/info. Everyone remains in control, traffic goes up, and someone is a winner.

In the words of Michael Scott, this is Win/Win/Win. One Win for the blogger, one Win for the contestants, and a Win for me for explaining it here and encouraging you to create a blog contest. There’s another Win too if you follow me on twitter, because all of my followers are winners.

09-09-09: Special Schipul Contest Time!


Who is excited? Keyboard Cat is excited!

During one of our company meetings, we watched the videos and set-up a couple of poll everywhere polls. The votes came in and the top winners are Jean-Marc from the guys team and Brienis from the girls team!

So, dear winners, be sure to contact me [blalanne (at) Schipul (dot) com) with your info and we will send them off. Please be sure to comment if you would like me to autograph the shirts. Wear your new shirt with pride! Sweet, sweet 3 Keyboard Cat Moon pride.

To everyone else: Be sure to watch these videos!

Winner of the guy’s shirt:   Video entry from Jean-Marc
Winner of the gal’s shirt: Video entry from Brienis

Oh snap! Those are some hot shirts!
Oh snap! Those are some hot shirts!

Hey, kids! We have an amazing surprise contest just for YOU!

Since Ed and part of the Schipulite crew is out at the Interactive Strategies conference knowledge sharing, some of us office dwellers thought it would be a shame to let 09-09-09 pass without incident.

If you know me (which, you so totally should) then you know that I love Threadless because of their awesome clothes, awesome staff, and awesome community involvement. You also know that I love a good internet joke like nobody’s business. Now, put the two together in the form of an online Schipul Blog contest and you get…


Oh, yes, this is happening. Right here. Right now. This totally mind-blowing shirt parodies the always amazing Keyboard Cat and the ridiculous 3 Wolf Moon shirt! And we want you to wear it with all of your nerd pride.

Staring directly at the shirt may cause blindness. And awesomeness.
Staring directly at the shirt may cause blindness.


  1. In the comments below, link us to one of the following:
    Your favorite YouTube video featuring Keyboard Cat
    – OR –
    Your favorite YouTube meme
  2. Include a comment on how hard the video you linked makes you laugh
  3. Videos MUST be safe for work viewing. We don’t dig on poor taste and vulgarities over here.
  4. Entries must be in by September 18th, 2009. Winner announced September 21st, 2009!


Make us LAUGH! We will judge each entry case-by-case.


In case you missed it, the prize is a glorious 3 Keyboard Cat Moon shirt! No more will you wonder, “what will I wear to this wedding!?” or “my cocktail dress is at the cleaners and I have nothing to wear to this art gala!” 3 Keyboard Cat Moon shirt has you covered! Literally!

One more thing… we have a girly and a manly tshirt! That’s right, one for each gender! So we will have TWO WINNERS! Male size is a large and girl size is a medium.

Now get to it! And uh, let us know if you are guy or gal. (No ninjas, please.)

Friday Fun: Want to Win a HOUSE??

The Myelin ProjectWhat? Win a HOUSE?

Yes, it’s true folks!

One of our awesome clients, The Myelin Project has partnered with Wayne Osteen Custom Homes to Raffle off a brand new home in Amarillo, Texas.

What does The Myelin Project do and what is the raffle benefiting? The Myelin Project goal is to fund research to find a cure for diseases (such as multiple sclerosis) that attack myelin (the magic cells that protect our nerves). Your raffle ticket proceeds go to finding that cure!

The deets:

  • Tickets are $50.00 (FOR A HOUSE!)
  • Only 4500 tickets will be sold (so you have a great chance to him!)
  • The Myelin Project will draw 100 tickets  and those  100  ticket holders  are the finalists
  • The 100 finalists will participate in a  reverse raffle to select the winning ticket  and house winner
  • The giveaway will be held at the house on Sunday, October 18 (You don’t have to be present to win!)
  • The last ticket drawn will be the house winner
  • Results will  then will be posted on  The Myelin Project web site’s home page
Head on over to their registration page to get in on the action and don’t worry–There will be a slew of other awesome giveaways on top of the house so if you aren’t the big winner, you still may get something fun.
Keep in mind that even if you don’t want to live in Amarillo, you can always sell the house (and make money!!). And for a mere $50 you have done something amazing for those who suffer from those terrible diseases.