Small businesses can learn lots from design firm Method's socially appealing philosophy.

Case in point: Method's Interaction Design Director Ben Fullerton recently wrote an eloquent article for Fast Company about turning website design pixels into a brand experience for users.

Here are our favorite bits of advice from the article:

Embody what you want people to feel. Brands "stand for something; they have both value and a set of values," Fullerton notes. What associations do users make when they hear your brand name (versus Nike, Facebook, Oxfam)?

Learn the difference between consistency and coherency. Consistency is ensuring your design shares common elements and behaviors across all modes of interaction, online and off. Coherency marries consistency "with a system of meaning that people can believe in and choose to be a part of: the brand," says Fullerton. "Tying the two together—interaction and brand—in a coherent system will facilitate experiences that are richer and lasting."

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