7 Cool, New Tools Designers and Marketers Should Use in 2012

January 23, 2012

The Internet abounds with widgets, apps, tools, and a whole host of resources to help you design and market better. Sometimes, a tool proves so useful, cutting edge or otherwise remarkable that it simply must be shared with other creative professionals. Each of the following seven cool, new tools fits the bill. Give them a try and see if they don't increase productivity, help you market, and save design time and effort in order to earn more profits in 2012. Best of all, each is free – at least for now! QAR Facebook Gravity Jack has been at the forefront of augmented reality marketing for some time, so it's only fitting that they've released a free QAR generator that will take potential customers to your Facebook page – literally from anywhere. Layer Styles Wouldn't it be cool if you could apply your layer styles in Photoshop and hit a button to have your design magically rendered in standards-compliant CSS3? Now you can with Layer Styles, which uses a tool that is strikingly similar to Photoshop's blending options and renders shadows, gradients and more in proper CSS3. Bootstrap Want a massive library of templates, fonts and other website design tools at your fingertips? Twitter's Bootstrap program promises to make design faster, easier and more fun. Adobe Edge The up-and-coming replacement to Flash that takes advantage of HTML5, JavaScript and CSS3 is now available as a free “preview” download. No doubt there will be eventually be a hefty price tag attached, so get it while the getting's good! XMarks XMarks isn't a brand-new tool, but its use is becoming more and more prevalent as users discover the joy of having synced bookmarks, on all browsers, all the time. SocialMention A free tool that will tell you how widespread your social networking reach has spread. Marketing Grader A free tool from HubSpot that doesn't measure analytics per se but instead measures how good your overall marketing is doing and offers insight and suggestions for how you can do better.

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About Brian Morris

Brian Morris serves in various capacities as a freelance writer, content developer and public relations specialist for growing small businesses. When he’s not writing, he can be found on the racquetball court - usually getting his tail kicked by guys 20 years older.

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January 07, 2016 03:22 am #

These are some great ideas for adding unique touches to your client's graphic design projects. A reputable professional design company will keep up on all the latest techniques so you don't have to remember them.

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Brian January 07, 2016 03:22 am #

Thanks for your feedback, Integraphix! Keeping up on all the latest technologies is definitely part of the job description for graphic designers, web developers, and marketers - especially free tools you can use to increase your bottom line!

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The PsPrint Blog is a resource for graphic designers, freelancers, small business owners and fans of print marketing. You'll find helpful techniques on printing everything there is to print, including business cards, postcards, brochures, stickers, invitations, greeting cards, door hangers, magnets and more. The PsPrint Blog shares creative ways to improve your design and layout skills, and useful tips for marketing your business in any medium. We also like to have a little fun, sharing design inspiration and spotlighting some our favorite customers' printed pieces in our "Hot Off the Press" series.