oh-admin, Author at oh hello! https://oh-hello.co Branding, Design and Strategy Thu, 25 Mar 2021 00:28:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=6.0.3 https://oh-hello.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/cropped-oh-favicon-thickboi-32x32.png oh-admin, Author at oh hello! https://oh-hello.co 32 32 Oh Hello wins web design award, strives to break marketing’s glass ceiling https://oh-hello.co/2021/03/oh-hello-wins-web-design-award-strives-to-break-marketings-glass-ceiling/ Thu, 25 Mar 2021 00:15:02 +0000 https://oh-hello.co/?p=218283 The post Oh Hello wins web design award, strives to break marketing’s glass ceiling appeared first on oh hello!.


The Lincoln-based, woman-led brand development and brand management agency Oh Hello recently won Best Web Design Agency in the Midwest from Corporate Vision Magazine’s Media Innovator Awards. A panel of expert judges selected Oh Hello in recognition of the agency’s expertise in web design, dedication to customer service and client satisfaction. The award complements a…

The Lincoln-based, woman-led brand development and brand management agency Oh Hello recently won Best Web Design Agency in the Midwest from Corporate Vision Magazine’s Media Innovator Awards.

A panel of expert judges selected Oh Hello in recognition of the agency’s expertise in web design, dedication to customer service and client satisfaction. The award complements a year in which the three-year-old company saw unprecedented growth, according to CEO and Co-founder Natalie Micale.

“I hate to admit this, but 2020 has been amazing for Oh Hello,” Micale said. “We do digital, and everyone wants to be on digital. I mean, we’re having to turn down clients at this point because we’re a boutique agency and we can’t work with everybody.”

Micale said it feels weird to admit to such oddly timed success, since not every business is having the same positive experience. In fact, a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report issued Dec. 7 revealed that 56% of establishments nationwide experienced a decrease in demand for their products or services.

Thankfully for Micale and her crew of 20 employees, who work virtually across Lincoln and the Philippines, Oh Hello was decidedly not among the 4.7 million companies this year who suffered a drop in business. Rather, the pandemic helped the agency secure clients they would not otherwise have been able to reach, she said

Take Texas-based custom home theatre builders Dreamedia, for instance. Dreamedia had grown a sizable YouTube following of about 66,000 subscribers before the pandemic hit, but the high-end business geared toward cinephiles and audiophiles did not have a good website.

The nearly overnight shift to telework for 68.6 million workers forced Dreamedia to reckon with the fact that any potential customers would be researching them online for the foreseeable future. They needed a better web presence immediately, one that would appeal to an audience willing to spend thousands of dollars on state-of-the-art home theater systems.

So, the company contacted Oh Hello, whose Philippines-based design and development teams built a sleek, understated site with a palette of blacks, whites and muted wood tones that evoked the atmosphere of speakers, projection screens and the knotty pinewood surfaces frequently found in professionally engineered acoustic environments.

“It is so clear that we would not have gotten that project with the urgency that (Dreamedia) needed it done or the element of investment they were willing to put into design if this pandemic had not happened,” Micale said.

Like many other brand marketing agencies, Oh Hello has two focus areas: helping new and established companies brand or rebrand themselves, and managing the day-to-day operations of existing brands. They speak in familiar terms about the power of storytelling, about never underestimating the desire for emotional connection among customers looking to purchase barn lighting fixtures.

Unlike most agencies, however, Oh Hello’s offices are entirely virtual and international, with the majority of the agency working in the Philippines. This decision was fueled not just by the desire to cut costs—though Micale did note that the wages Oh Hello pays its overseas specialists are considered high for the Philippines—but also by a practical need for skilled tech talent she said they couldn’t find in America.

“In the Philippines, their developers are wicked smart. They’re way more advanced than most people in the United States,” she said.

(That tech talent gap is a huge issue.)

As for the agency’s future, Oh Hello wants to keep working with brands that want to tell amazing stories, regardless of industry.

“What’s most inspiring for us is when we work with founders who are so passionate about telling the ‘why’ behind what they do that they allow us to really creatively engage with brand strategy and web design, start to finish, building the brand,” she said.
“And they’re engaged in it as well, because they’re excited to get that story out.”

Micale also stays galvanized by a personal goal. She wants Oh Hello to break the $1 million revenue glass ceiling, something that only 2 percent of women-led businesses achieve.

She also wants to inspire other women to fearlessly carve their own paths to success.

“Not a lot of women are founders of agencies,” she said. “I talk to so many women who are freelancing, and they want to start an agency, but they’re really scared to. I want to lead the way in showing other women in the marketing world that they can be badasses.”

Source: https://siliconprairienews.com/2020/12/oh-hello-wins-web-design-award-strives-to-break-marketings-glass-ceiling/






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Oh Hello Awarded Best Web Design Agency In Midwest https://oh-hello.co/2020/10/blog/ Mon, 19 Oct 2020 15:34:24 +0000 http://smoggy-tent.flywheelsites.com/?p=218085 We Got One, And It Certainly Won’t Be Our Last. Despite the pandemic hitting the US left and right, we’ve managed to stay focused and cut through the noise. The Midwest has a new leader in web design for 2020, and we’re proud to claim that title. Earlier this year, we were announced as the […]

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We Got One, And It Certainly Won’t Be Our Last.

Despite the pandemic hitting the US left and right, we’ve managed to stay focused and cut through the noise. The Midwest has a new leader in web design for 2020, and we’re proud to claim that title.

Earlier this year, we were announced as the 2020 Best Web Design Agency in the Midwest by Corporate Vision Magazine, for the Media Innovator Awards. The winner is selected by a panel who evaluates expertise in web design, dedication to customer service and client satisfaction with an ongoing commitment to excellence and innovation. Click the logo to see more info on the selection process.

Our CEO, Natalie Micale, the front man for our punk-rock band of creatives said this about the award: “We’re a new agency model, with an international team and a growing client base. We’re excited to be recognized for driving results through creativity, with an all-digital based team of designers, strategists, and copywriters, who are passionate about building rad brands.”

We’ve Worked With Some Of The Biggest And The Baddest.

We’ve done web design work for clients like Midwest Barrel Co (high-quality wine distribution and E-commerce), Dreamedia (luxury home theatre, E-commerce and installment), Vibe Plate (whole-body vibration therapy equipment), and more. While each of our clients have different needs for their websites, our goal is always the same: to create a brand that customers don’t think twice about buying from.

After launching Midwest Barrel Co.’s website, their e-commerce sales increased by 333% in nine months. “They brought in the right experts to help handle some of the complexity we were wanting for our site so they could do what they do best – design and branding. They are available, responsive, and true visionaries in their field. If you are wanting to elevate your brand – this is the team to work with”, said Jessica Loseke, co-owner of Midwest Barrel Co.

To see more of our web design work, check out our web design

At Oh Hello we build brands that consumers emotionally connect to and want in their lives. Our virtual team of creatives and client base is growing day by day, so we’re excited to see what the coming year has in store for us.

If you’re ready to take your brand to the next level and convert more customers, schedule a free consultation with us today.

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Freelancer vs Agency https://oh-hello.co/2019/03/freelancer-vs-agency/ Tue, 12 Mar 2019 18:56:41 +0000 http://smoggy-tent.flywheelsites.com/?p=212729 The post Freelancer vs Agency appeared first on oh hello!.


Fresh takes can help stir up new ideas and revisit old ones, but depending on your needs, where you get these takes can vary greatly. A quick Google search can link you to a freelancer scrounging for gigs, an ambitious agency looking for its next creative endeavor, or even someone’s Uncle Jerry spewing hottakes on YouTube – wich path you pick is up to you. (Though I recommend avoiding most Uncle Jer’s and their YouTube channels for marketing/branding advice…)

Pros of using a freelancer

The cheapest of cheap A freelancer is a solo artist. They don’t employ others, they don’t work in a brick and mortar office, and there are essentially zero startup costs to be one, it’s a pretty sweet deal, actually.  This means they have low overhead and can choose their own prices – but an increasingly competitive environment for clientele often means they undershoot their price points. Cheap doesn’t have to mean it’s a knockoff, just cheap enough to knock off a few bucks.

Past work is their calling cardSure, plenty of freelancers rely on word of mouth referrals, but with companies like Upwork and Hubstaff Talent, you won’t have to rely on knowing someone who can vouch for someone. Freelance work history has to be transparent because it’s what they use to land the next gig. Getting a peek at the full arsenal before hiring means you’re not just basing your decisions off a resume.

Your calendar is their calendar Freelancers often get typecast into the free-spirited, world traveler and couch surfer roles – which to a point – is true. They aren’t always working 9-5 jobs and their schedules usually revolve around the work they are doing and not the other way around. Bonus points if their calendar isn’t stacked with other work… you’re priority numero uno.

Hyper-specialized Let’s be honest, Freelancing is a saturated market and the people working in this manner have to stand out. It’s become a world of niches and specialized work, which is great for you because it’s a lot easier to find someone with a narrow focus compared to a agency. If you need copy for your custom kitten clothing line website, or editing for your 1980s themed garage punk band music video, there is probably someone out there just for you.

Cons of using a freelancer

One lonely brain– Groupthink is bad, but on the other hand, single-mindedness is equally as much of a creativity soul suck. Freelancers tend to get in a rhythm and work jobs they are comfortable with/know how to do well. Which is all well and good when you’re trying to fulfill a specific niche but not so good when looking for that new and striking creative push that’ll set you apart from the competition. You want and need creative differences in your work, not just one person’s vision.

Under and overwhelmed work– In your pursuit of the best freelancer the Internet has to offer you’ll quickly realize two common stereotypes. The first, the Side Hustler, this one works a regular job and seeks freelance for that “treat yo self” money. This means that you might not always be the priority, they might miss a deadline or two, and they may not always give you grade-A work. Number two would be, the Overdoer, this one does this as a full-time job and often takes on more than they can handle. Which can lead to rushed work and missed deadlines.

Agencies are teachers– Agencies just straight up have more resources and know how (at least… the one I’m thinking about). A team of creatives from an agency has more knowledge to offer you, and they’ll teach you, because that’s their job. You’ll get the why and how they came up with strategies and not just the work; you walk away from an agency knowing more about your brand, how it got here, and where it’s going.

When it doubt, source it out! Sometimes your business needs an outside perspective to shake things up, or refocus on creative goals. Hiring a freelancer is an option many are weary of, but when it comes to creative work, there are two sides to every story – so do your research, ask plenty of questions and make sure the fit feels right before venturing out in any random direction. And will someone please disable Uncle Jerry’s comments?

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What Punk Bands Taught Me About Branding https://oh-hello.co/2019/02/what-punk-bands-taught-me-about-branding/ Thu, 07 Feb 2019 16:23:18 +0000 http://smoggy-tent.flywheelsites.com/?p=212611 The post What Punk Bands Taught Me About Branding appeared first on oh hello!.


I grew up in a small town in western Nebraska that glorified two things: Sports, and Religion. Sometimes sports was the religion. I didn’t associate with either of those as a teenager, and high school became increasingly difficult when every group became engulfed by these two hobbies. Add this to the fact that the only radio stations in town played country and oldies, and you’ll see a very unamused and extremely bored teenager looking for some sort of escape.

The beginning of that escape came as soon as I flipped to MTV and saw the music video premiere of Blink 182’s “What’s My Age Again?” I was in a trance the entire time. It wasn’t just the music or the lyrics. It was the attitude in the music video. The nudity, the tattoos, the piercings, the humor. It was so raw and so different than what other rock bands at the time were releasing. It felt rebellious. I immediately needed to pierce my lip and find more of this kind of music to insert into my veins. Blink 182 was my gateway drug to punk rock.

The closest record store selling anything outside of the mainstream was about 3 hours away, so I would force my parents to add a quick detour there every trip we took to the city. I would spend every penny I saved on punk rock zines, t-shirts and compilation albums put out by labels like Fat Wreck, Epitaph, and Nitro. Each magazine and compilation introduced me to new bands, and nothing else at the time could possibly matter to me as much as those belongings.

Fast-forward 17 years later and I’m implementing lessons that these bands taught me to help our clients build better brands. It’s my belief that punk bands were the connoisseurs of great branding.

Before I continue, let’s clarify two things. For the sake of this writing:

  1. “Punk bands” can be anyone from Sex Pistols to more mainstream bands like Blink 182. We can talk until we’re blue in the face about where Blink 182 fits in now, but in the 90’s and early 2000s they were putting out some of the best punk music this Nebraska boy could find.
  2. Branding is not just the logo or the colors of a company. Branding is the feeling, emotion, and personality associated with a company or product.

Now let’s see what The Misfits taught me about building a brand.

Creating A Personality For Your Brand

Whether you realized it or not, brands have personalities just like people do. And consumers choose whether or not they want to be around them based on those personalities.

Like I stated above, I was struggling as a teenager to identify with anything on mainstream radio. At the time, the top rock bands were Smash Mouth, 3 Doors Down, Lifehouse, and Bon Jovi. I associated with punk bands so quickly because their personalities were in-line with the kind of personalities I wanted to be associated with. It’s the reason that Blink 182 music video sucked me in so quickly and changed my identity. I viewed myself as this raw, in-your-face, fuck-the-rules rebel adolescent, so I was drawn to personalities like Sid Vicious…but stuck in a sea of Bon Jovi’s. When you feel connected to a brand’s personality, you start to view them as a friend or an ally. The punk scene created a massive group of allies with their personality, and successful brands are constantly launching into stardom by perfecting this rule.

Look at skin care. What does the facial scrub company Frank Body have that Neutrogena doesn’t? Spend 10 seconds on their Instagram account and you’ll immediately get it. The Australian-based beauty brand launched in 2013 with only $10,000 and ended 2017 with over $20 million in annual revenue. It’s arguably not the best product on the market, nor is it the cheapest. But everything from their website and social media to their packaging and emails are filled with personality that their core audience identifies with. Without great branding, you’d need millions of dollars to compete with emotionless robot brands like Neutrogena. With great branding, $10,000 seems to do the trick.

What’s In A Name?

Before ever hearing a song from them, I was pretty certain that I was going to enjoy the Pittsburgh punk band Anti-Flag. They entered my life after 9/11, when the country was being aggressively divided by their stance on the war. While mainstream rock artists were coming out in support of the president, punk bands started aggressively pushing against him. This is when I discovered Anti-Flag with the release of their single “911 For Peace”. All of a sudden, I had a band that was singing about the war in a mind frame that I shared, and they communicated their emotions in ways I was unable to. I may have never stumbled into this niche of politically infused punk rock if Anti-Flag had a name that was less telling of their views.

Your name is your first opportunity to showcase your personality, character and market positioning. Use it to draw the line in the sand that pulls your core audience closer and pushes the other people away. Chad the high school star quarterback wasn’t going to see the name Anti-Flag and buy their record on a hunch. Davey the adolescent punk kid, however, would.

Great brands, and great bands have come along with absolute shit names and still dominated the market. Don’t view this as a hard rule to follow when naming your brand, but keep in mind that you’ll need to spend extra time, energy, and marketing dollars to familiarize a crowd with your brand if the name isn’t telling of your personality or offering. Just ask NOFX.

Know Your Why

Simon Sinek is an author and popular Ted Talks speaker who helps companies understand the importance of their why. In short, he teaches that most companies seem to only focus on talking about what they do or how they do it, neglecting the most important piece of why they do it. Not the financial reasoning, but the deeper meaning tied to the importance of your company. He suggests that people (not just consumers, but employees too) love companies that believe in what they believe. If you lead with your why you’ll gain fans that share your beliefs and support your journey year after year.

I decided at a pretty young age that I wasn’t going to get into drugs or alcohol. I saw what heavy drug use and alcoholism could lead to, and I knew that it wasn’t the path I wanted to take. What I didn’t know was that this lifestyle had a name…until I was introduced to the band AFI and read that their singer was straight edge; meaning he refrained from using alcohol, tobacco, and recreational drugs. Suddenly, I had a band that believed what I believed, and I’ve supported them with my paychecks for over 17 years.

To see this in action within a company, look at outdoor apparel brand Patagonia. Founded in 1973, Patagonia’s 2017 annual revenue hit around $750 million. They actually do have a superior product than a lot of other options in the market, but what made them a giant worthy of those numbers has more to do with their beliefs. Patagonia positioned themselves as the environmentally-conscious outdoor brand. Their mission statement says it all: Our mission is to build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.

To them, it’s not just branding mumbo-jumbo that we see when brands try to take sides on popular controversies. They recently asked their audience not to buy their products during Black Friday to address the issue of consumerism, which drove brand loyalty through the roof from consumers that share their beliefs.

Use Tension To Draw A Line In The Sand

From brand strategist Jasmine Bina: “I define brand tension as a sense of discomfort that pushes target customers to convert, and non-targets to walk away.” This isn’t the kind of tension you cause when you inadvertently put out a racist ad. It’s the tension that you create in someone’s mind as they’re deciding whether or not they can sit at your table. Tension forces you to decide who your target audience is, and it narrows the focus on everything you do directly onto them. Too often in our work, we hear clients mention the fear of excluding anybody…that they want everyone to feel welcome and included. Our answer every time is, If you’re trying to speak to everybody, you’ll end up speaking to nobody.” Consumers rely on brands to help them define who we are. Without brands to help them define themselves, we would have a massive identity crisis on our hands.

Punk rock was built on tension, created by groups of people that grew apart from the world of rock ‘n roll and disco dancing. Since its origins, every generation of punk bands has used tension to push records, sling merchandise, and spread their ideologies. They’re constantly drawing a line in the sand and asking for their fans to pick a side. From veganism and animal rights to anarchy or socialism, punk rock has always forced its consumers to choose a side and carry the flag. There is no punk rock without tension, and there are no great brands without discomfort.

Thank you for reading. This article was influenced by these songs:


Blink 182 — What’s My Age Again?

The Briggs — 3rd World War


Anti-Flag — 911 For Peace

Bad Religion — I Want To Conquer The World

NOFX — Dinosaurs Will Die


Green Day — Brain Stew

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