iAnd you can't beat a freshly sliced lamb sandwich eaten with a backdrop of Rangitoto.
That's right, I've officially arrived back in Auckland, New Zealand after a two year stint in crazy old New York. Since I've been back I've been working in-house with Westpac, helping them with some major web projects. (Check out their new Everyday Money section.)
I'm keen to get stuck in with Kiwi clients and can work remotely or on site, so hit me up at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks to the sponsorship of Westpac, I got to ask three kick-ass Kiwi women who're living and working in New York about their experiences. Is it what people think it is? What's it like being a woman in your field in New York? What do you love here, what's been... well, crap about it?
Part one - with musician Sarah Gibson from the band Streets of Laredo – is up now. on Westpac's REDNews hub.
Part two – with Creative Director Beth O'Brien from R/GA.
Part three – with Director Sally Tran from Ghost Robot.
Some of the industries I've worked in this year:
I know this is a relatively boring post, so here are some delightfully naughty pandas to make up for it.
I'm writing a couple of posts for Westpac New Zealand's REDNews – a digital hub of great content – and the first one's about chucking out the idea of "networking" and focusing on building real connections with other professionals.
Read it here: www.westpac.co.nz/rednews/women/networking-with-heart-building-real-connections/
Last year I spent a few months working with Westpac's marketing and product teams to revamp their Home Loans section. We had fancy new templates designed by Infinity to play with, so this was our chance to make our copy just as modern and accessible. So we reviewed, restructured, chopped out about 40% of the existing content and developed a brand new Property Investment hub.
It was great! At times a little mind boggling! But mostly fun! This kind of restructuring job is like a great logic puzzle to me, and it really brushed up my skills in content mapping, sitemapping and using Balsamiq for wireframing. And of course, simplifying a whole lot of words down into a clear, easy-to-read user journey.
And we just won People's Choice for Best Plain English Communication! Yahoo!
"Members of the public also submitted entries for two categories. The People’s Choice awards recognise the best and worst in government and corporate communications. Westpac won the Best Communication award for its web content about the often-complex topic of home loans. Of this entry the judges said, ‘This is a well-constructed website that explains a complex range of options and considerations in clear, straightforward language. Taking out a home loan is an important decision, made even more so by the current housing affordability crisis."
... from here...
... to here!
That's right, I'm in New York, baby! From August 2015 I'll be working from the Brooklyn office (my apartment) – and I'm still available for work. Nothing's changed, except my location. New Zealand clients will still be able to bill through Big On Writing, in NZD.
It's times like these I'm really thankful to have been born into a global village where working remotely is possible, and I can't wait to keep doing good work with great clients both in New Zealand and around the world. Concrete jungle where dreams are made of, huh.
Watch this space.
Congrats to Sue Worthington, my mentor, colleague and pseudo mum, who – together with Pete Morris – has put together a lovely website to relaunch Big On Writing. We've all been running or working for Big On Writing for years in some form or another (Indiego, Petticoat Junction), but with our relaunch we're throwing all our energy into the brand.
Check out the website yourself at www.bigonwriting.co.nz
The Home Loans section is the first cab off the rank to test out new web templates for Westpac – and it's looking almost as good as it sounds. Yep, that's because the section has had a makeover. I helped by reviewing, restructuring and overhauling the 80+ pages, including creating a new Property Investment section from scratch. I reckon people are going to love navigating through the site.
One of New Zealand's favourite brands needed to consolidate its tone of voice. We stepped in with a review of their tone across digital, PR, advertising and more, defining what is is and making it simple to understand for Anchor's many authors. Sue's written up a case study on her new site: Petticoat Junction.