Telos Ventures

We at Rystedt Creative resonate with Telos' vision to better the world through business ventures that are stewarded wisely and multiply resources. Telos resonated with our approach to web development. So we built a new website together.

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Massage 911

We used what little information we had, matched colors, sourced images, chose fonts, and arranged all of the content to peek visual interest.

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8 Reasons Why Your Nonprofit Should Be Using WordPress for its Website in 2019

WordPress has been a popular content management system (CMS) since it launched in 2003. Although originally designed as a blogging tool, it now powers nearly a third of the Web. That’s more than 60 million websites – many of which are nonprofit sites. Nonprofits, big and small, local and global, are choosing WordPress because it empowers them to focus on what they do best – make our world a better place.

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Improve Your Workflow with These Productivity Boosting Apps for macOS (2018 Update)

Rystedt Creative is powered partially by Macs. Whether you like them or hate them, Macs have remained a favorite of creative professionals since Apple and Adobe brought vector graphics to laser printers in 1985. Today you are likely to find at least a couple of Macs in the offices of graphic design freelancers creating logos and business cards out of their homes; print-shops sending items to the presses; and web developers and writers (like us) delivering the creative digital content you need.  I (Joshua) have been a pro-user of multiple platforms and there are pros and cons to every operating system available (don't be surprised if you catch me with a machine that has multiple operating systems installed). Yet macOS has become Gabrielle's and my daily driver. We have spent a lot of time developing productive workflows with powerful apps to get us through our hectic schedules. To help our fellow Mac users, here are Joshua's favorite productivity boosting apps for macOS. On Linux or Windows? Consider my alternative recommendations under each app. Work faster, use more of your screen and keep your fingers on the keyboard using these apps: If you find this article helpful consider giving it a share ? Calcbot Calculator apps are the sort of things that most of us take for granted. But the basic premise can be improved on to make your life a bit more pleasant. Calcbot is a smart calculator app that includes everything from a history tape to scientific functions. If you're running a business or nonprofit you probably find yourself punching numbers into a calculator of some sort more often than you would prefer. Calcbot is for those of us…

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Should You Hire a Copywriter?

When I tell people I’m a copywriter, I usually get the same reaction: “Oh!” Followed by, “Cool. That’s pretty cool.” In general, most of the people I meet don’t quite understand what copywriters do, or how they get paid for it. Even my own mom wasn’t clear on what I actually do for a living and I’ve got a handful of family members who think that I “just do something online”. Or I get the fun mix up where people think that I do copyrighting – as in something related to copyright law. I do not, repeat, do not, know a thing about copyrights and patents! If you’re curious about copywriting, but haven’t ever had the chance to ask, pull up a chair and grab some coffee! And if you’re on the fence about hiring a copywriter, don’t worry. We’ll look into the pros and cons of hiring a copywriter, as well address times when you might be better off doing the work in house. First Things First: What do Copywriters Do? Copywriting is a profession as old as the idea of product marketing. If you’ve ever read an ad, you’ve read something written by a copywriter. If you’ve ever watched a television show, you’ve listened to lines written by copywriters (from a specialty you probably know as screenwriting). If you’ve ever read a product description in a catalog or on a website, you read the work of a copywriter. Copywriting is all around us. In the era of online business, we’re exposed to copywriting everywhere from websites to email newsletters and social media posts. Copywriters are the nameless lot responsible for much of the content you see and interact with…

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9 Easy Tips for Helping Your Nonprofit to Think in Marketing Terms

One of the most difficult parts of running a nonprofit is the administrative work and fundraising that happens behind the scenes. When you’re focused on meeting your nonprofit’s goals, the last thing you need is to miss those goals because you’re behind the curve when it comes to marketing your mission and the work that you do. The key to making connections and drawing support is to work smarter, not harder, to reach potential supporters. Sharing your nonprofit’s work and thinking in marketing terms – like you might if you were running a for-profit business – can help you meet or exceed your fundraising and support goals. With those out of the way, you can spend more time and resources on the projects that matter most to you and your supporters. Here are some ways to market your nonprofit in a way that won’t leave your supporters with a sour “used car salesman” taste in their mouths: 1. Define Your Target Audience Let’s face it: not every person you meet is going to relate with what your nonprofit does and want to support you. That’s okay. Actually, that’s a great thing. There’s no company or nonprofit that appeals to every human being universally. And that’s what allows your work to really stand out. Instead of using blanket approaches to raise funds or find support, look to audiences – groups of people – who are most likely to support the work that you do. For example, if you run a nonprofit that’s dedicated to saving local ecosystems, look for individuals who are committed to the local landscape and already support other groups, like bird watching clubs, or events, like cleanup days,…

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The Wyneken Project

“Excellent design and superlative support. They are always there to help.” - Rev Roy Axel Coats, Treasurer for the Wyneken Project The Wyneken Project is revitalizing and planting churches in Baltimore city. While they were busy changing lives within inner city Baltimore we were busy revitalizing Wyneken’s existing website was a simple site with limited functionality and a canned template design. The Wyneken Project Board of Directors knew that in order to continue to increase their support for Baltimore churches they would need to communicate their success and effectiveness online. That’s where we came in to help. Branding Design As the Wyneken Project continues to grow, a unique atmosphere for their website and other digital and physical communication will become increasingly helpful. Consistent visual atmosphere in communication makes nonprofits instantly recognizable to their volunteers, supporters, and donors. Our creative design team developed consistent branding for the Wyneken Project including colors and typography that they can use on or off the web. We then took this branding design and used it as the guide for their new website’s look and feel. Implementation of Event Sign Up Functionality The Wyneken Project’s success rests in pairing churches with churches in order to jump start churches in need. An important piece to this work is organizing volunteers to assist with events, outreach, and generosity at Baltimore churches. So we implemented an event sign up feature on the new The Wyneken Project is now able to create events, manage volunteers, and send emails to individuals who have signed up. Their volunteers can view events and sign up right on their website. Implementation of a Dedicated Online Giving Portal with Recurring Online Giving…

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Using a Website Template or WYSIWYG Website Builder? Don’t Forget to Tie Up These Loose Ends

Few websites are built without some kind of templating. Even web developers use low level templating to organize their code and streamline their development process. If you’re building your own website you’re probably using a visual template for your website (often called a theme). You may even be using a what-you-see-is-what-you-get (WYSIWYG) drag and drop web builder (like what is offered by WordPress’ Gutenberg, Wix, or Weebly). But there is an inherent danger when using website templates - forgetting to make them uniquely yours. You don’t want someone visiting your website only to find some content they have seen on a similar looking site elsewhere. If you find this article helpful consider giving it a share ? Once you’ve completed your first draft with your website template don’t forget to tie up these loose ends: Boilerplate Most web templates include some static text meant to get you started, explain the purpose of the template page, or give you instructions on how to use that page template. Don’t forget to replace or edit this text. Your best bet, read it and then delete it and write the content for your own page. You don’t want boilerplate on your site. Even if the homepage template’s text sounds like it's gold you don’t want to run the risk of sounding like someone else, publishing duplicate content, or being noticed for being identical to another site. Write your own content or hire a copywriter to write uniquely great content for your site. Default stock photos You want your website to look great. Hey, we get it. You don’t have the time or equipment to take photos as great as the stock photos included in…

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Should I Use a Slider on My Webpage? Slider Pros and Cons

So you want to use a “slider” on your webpage. But should you? Find out here. What is a Slider? An image slider (or carousel) is a popular webpage feature - especially on homepages. A slider is basically a slideshow of images, text, and/or videos that may either automatically scroll or allow visitors to scroll through the content. Sliders are usually powered by JavaScript, used on the top of webpages, and automatically advance at time intervals. But, like most popular webpage features, there are a variety of slider solutions. You’ve probably seen sliders used before. This ecommerce store, for example, uses a slider to show off the variety of custom products they offer: Slider Pros Some trends defy explanation - the slider trend isn’t one of them. Here’s why sliders took over the web: Pro: More content in less space. Sliders, by nature, make portions of your content visible at different times. The upside to this is that you can pack a lot of content into a small space. Want to tell a visual story about your new product (but don’t want to use a lot of vertical scrolling to do so)? A slider solves this. Pro: Text on image layering without image manipulation or writing code. Before popular slider plugins layering images and text required either image manipulation or code. Sliders have eliminated this need for most users. A robust slider plugin will handle the image changes and coded functionality for you - so you can focus on design. Pro: Interactive content that draws your visitors’ attention. The best sliders give the visitors control (either through forward and back buttons or with scrolling). Such functionality makes sliders interactive. Interactive…

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