Thursday, May 31, 2007

Do not adjust your browser...

I think you guys know me well enough by now to guess that if I suddenly stop posting here, it probably means I'm up to something. For a while now, I've been toying with changing The Viral Garden's look. While I think the old blog template was decent, I was never a fan of the light green on dark background, and I wanted more options for organizing content here.

Finally, after about a week of tweaking, I've settled on the look you see here. What I love about this template is that it gives me the ability to move almost all of my personal/business information to the top of the blog, via tabs. I've added sections for speaking and a link to my Daily Fix posts, and I've also completely redone my interviews and articles sections. Both are now much cleaner and easier to use.

Basically, I think the layout is much cleaner and less cluttered than it was. And besides it was time for a new look anyway. I apologize to the feed readers that have had to deal with my sending through multiple revisions to old posts, and ask that you please bear with me for the next few days since I still have a bit of tinkering I want to do.

Also, if anyone knows the code for adding a 'recent comments' widget to the sidebar of a Blogger blog, let me know, as I want to make that change as well.

Hope you like it, and at least hope the new layout is easier to navigate. And no apologies for the banner, I like it. Thanks to Tara, CK, Armano, and Ann for giving me feedback prior to 'launching'.

UPDATE: Are any of you not seeing all the tabs at the top on one row? Luc is on a Mac and said the 'FAQ' tab was rolling over so that it was on top of the 'Home' tab. He's helping me get it fixed now. I set it up with a PC running Firefox, but it might not look right on other systems. If something looks off, please let me know!

34 comments:

Drew McLellan said...

Mack,

The new look is excellent! I'm sure you will get rave reviews!


Drew

Sandi K. Solow said...

I like the new look - your hard work has paid off! It looks great.

It's nice to have a face to put with the blogger!

mindblob said...

Mack,
Excellent! Wow! I just love it. It's fresh and insightful. Love the "Blurring the line between company and customer" baseline. Plus the tabs too... they bring clear and direct links towards relevant information. Congrats and like Hugh would say : "Rock on!"

Ann Handley said...

Very nice... looks even more impressive LIVE.

: )

Cord Silverstein said...

Great improvement Mack! Well done.

Chris Houchens said...

much cleaner and brighter. Love it

Chris Thilk said...

Very nice. It rocks in both the free world and elsewhere. Now I have to get on pimping MMM's look.

Michael Morton said...

Mack,

I love the new look! It is a definite improvement over the old look.

But I didn't see a link to my blog on your blog roll ;)

Ardi XIV said...

Fresh design!
you might want to check the following link, concerning the recent comments navbar:

http://blog.forret.com/2006/01/recent-posts-comments-in-blogger/

Tara said...

Well, ya know I love it. :) The look, the tagline, the improved navigation, more information.

David Armano said...

Nicely done Mack. You just raised the bar for the rest of us. :)

Connie Reece said...

LOVE the redesign, Mack. Just had to click through from Google Reader to check it out, and I'm glad I did.

Tara said...

FAQ rolls to the next line for me, but that is due to the little icon that appears next to the email tab thanks to the Better Gmail extension for Firefox.

Matt Haverkamp said...

Good stuff Mack. Love it!

Jordan Behan said...

I too like the presence of the pic in your sidebar, and I'm quite fond of the new speaker's page. It will undoubtedly result in a lot of appearances. Can't wait for the first video.

As always, it's an honor to be featured in the blogroll, and now in the feedback on the speaker's page as well.

Nice work Mack, you've combined form and function nicely here.

Jennifer R. said...

Very nice look, fresh and welcoming, easy to read. The banner suits your blog's name and is quite "hobbity" (a good thing!)

Mack Collier said...

Thanks to everyone for the feedback, glad you guys seem to like the Garden's new look. And thanks for the suggestions about the 'recent comments' widget, I am going to tinker with that this weekend and see if I can get it up.

And I agree Jennifer, the banner pic definitely seems 'hobbity'. I started not to put it up because it didn't seem 'marketing-oriented', but then I saw where Ann Handley was quoted on another blog as saying that we need to remember that 'It's just a blog'. So I decided to have fun with it, and leave my 'Lord of the Rings' banner up ;)

Mack Collier said...

And thanks to Luc for helping me check and fix the template this morning so that the tabs are all on one row for Mac users. Except for Tara ;)

sean howard said...

Love the new look!

And the fact that the story titles are clickable totally rules!

Mack Collier said...

Funny stuff Sean, I didn't even realize you could do that till you just mentioned it! I remembered that one of the things I wished the old template had was clickable titles, and I just got used to not having them. Cool beans!

CK said...

enjoyed your new bio, too. The look and feel are great and the tabs make it much easier for us all to understand not only how to learn from you...but how to hire you.

Disclaimer: I've retained Mack on three separate projects and since I kept hiring him that sort of speaks for itself, eh?

Nudge Marketing said...

Hey Mack,

I like it, nice work. :)

I would like it much better if it had hundreds of popup ads, a few of those anoying embedded video ads that take ages to load and some coma inducing flashing banners.. :P (I'm joking by the way).

Look forward to reading the quality posts on the sexy new page.

Jake - NudgeMarketing

vahe habeshian said...

Hey, Mack.

Awesome job. Looks really great.

Best,

Vahe

Katie Chatfield said...

The banner pic is lovely! I'm a huge Hobbit fan, and love this ethos of the Shire: the custom of giving away gifts on their birthdays instead of receiving them. They use the term mathom for gifts (which means assorted interesting objects) which are invariably given as presents many times over.
A bit like blogging, no?

Tim Jackson- Masi Guy said...

Wow! I'm even less worthy of being in the same blogosphere with you now.

(Hanging my head in shame...)

Mack Collier said...

Thanks CK, Vahe, Jake, Shouty Lady, and Tim. And Tim I'm the one that's not worthy, YOUR blog has the recent comments widget!

gianandrea said...

having used the same look as yours before, i have to say that you got your goal. this is much clear and easy to read. well done.

Chris Brown said...

Mack:
Love the new look. I like seeing your real photo, although miss the "GIJoe guy" style photo.

Tabs are working just fine on my browser. Nice redo.

Chris

C. B. Whittemore said...

Mack, I like it very much. It's inspiring, whimsical and thought-provoking. All good things in a blog.

Philippe said...

Wow! It's a portal :)

I like it a lot.

Michael Wagner said...

Very nice!

And always thankful for the insights and wisdom you share...regardless of the look.

Keep creating,
Mike

Penina said...

I clicked on the link to your site, and ran off to read a bedtime story to my son. The next thing I knew it was just shy of 6:00 am. I made tea and I glanced at my computer. 'What was I doing this time?' I thought, as I approached the unrecognizable page.

'Oh!'

Nice look, Mick. Nice change. All bright and shiny and wishing me a friendly good morning from a the Verdant South.

Congrats on the fresh, new look!

Troy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Relationship Geek - Phil Gerbyshak said...

Great new look Mack. I really like it. It's crisp, it's clean, and it's got great colors. Bravo!