AdWords Scripts now available in new AdWords interface

AdWords Scripts are now available in the New AdWords interface, giving users a visual refresh, as well as some new capabilities that make management a bit easier, especially for advertisers with lots of scripts in their accounts.

Here are some of the key changes:

  • See up to 500 script logs per page and filter by date.
  • See a more precise time when a script will run.
  • See who added a script to the account.
  • Filter scripts based on name or who created it.
  • Duplicate existing scripts.

You can find scripts in the three-dot menu, under the Bulk Actions section. If you go there from your MCC account, you’ll find your MCC-level scripts and, if you access the page from within an account, you’ll see the scripts you’ve set up for that account.

Scripts are now available in the new AdWords interface.

Google shows 10 scripts by default, but there’s a new option that lets you see as many as 500 scripts on one page. For heavy script users like me, this is a great addition. The scripts are also now sorted by name, by default. This is different from the old interface where scripts are sorted by “last edit date,” but luckily, all columns are sortable in the new interface so I can easily see my most recent scripts at the top of the page again.

A listing of scripts in the new AdWords interface

While scripts are still limited to running once per hour, there is a change to how the frequency is displayed for scripts that were set up before the launch of the new interface. For those, Google now indicates at what time during the selected hour it will run in the future.

Scripts can be scheduled to run during a particular hour, but some scripts will show a more precise time for when it is supposed to run.

There is also a new column to indicate who created the script. All scripts created in the old interface have been marked as created by “Your Google Account Team.” New scripts created through the MCC interface are also assigned to “Your Google Account Team.” Only by creating a script directly in the child account will it appear as having been created by the logged-in user.

You can now see who created a script.

One of the most exciting additions is a convenient new option under the Actions menu for each script: Duplicate.

Existing scripts can be duplicated, making it much easier to maintain versions while experimenting with new code changes.

When editing my own scripts, like the ones I post on Search Engine Land or Optmyzr, or when trying a new script I got from someone else, it’s nice to have an easy way to duplicate it. Scripts don’t keep versions, so, if you break it, it’s hard to go back to the old working version. Now I can do my own versioning by making a copy of a script before I start playing with the code.

It’s also easier now to find scripts because Google added filters to the page to let us search for a script’s name or creator.

Filter script settings by name of the script or who created it.

Filters can include advanced operators, making it a very flexible tool to help find the script you’re looking for.

Script history is now on a separate tab from script settings, an improvement over the previous interface, which required us to scroll down past all of the settings before we could see the history. There’s also a date selector on this tab. That, in combination with the ability to see up to 500 script runs per page, makes it a lot easier to determine what scripts are doing in an account.

Filter script logs by date.

There is a new column for “Actions,” but it’s not clear what this one is supposed to contain. Perhaps we’ll soon get the ability to undo script changes from here.

One downside to the new interface is that the developer IDE no longer has examples and links to the documentation for how to write scripts. This makes it harder for new script developers to get the hang of the system, but they can, of course, still access the documentation directly from the developer center.

Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.

SearchCap: Capitalizing on Google Tag Manager, Google My Business & more

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.

From Search Engine Land:

Recent Headlines From Marketing Land, Our Sister Site Dedicated To Internet Marketing:

Search News From Around The Web:



SEM / Paid Search



Danny Sullivan joins Google, leaves advisor role at Third Door Media

Three months after retiring from his Chief Content Officer position at Third Door Media (this publication’s publisher), Danny Sullivan announced this morning that he’ll begin working at Google in an as-yet-undefined role with the search division of Alphabet.

From his post:

My title is still being determined, but the position will be to serve as a sort of public liaison for search. The goal is to increase the connection between those at Google who work hard on search each day and the public that depends on Google for answers. I’ll be educating the public about how search works. I’ll be exploring and explaining issues that may arise. I’ll be looking at ways to take in feedback and work for solutions to improve search going forward.

Sullivan relinquished the advisory role he’s held at Third Door Media since June. He continues to own a minority stake in the company.

How to Create a Realistic Watercolor Photoshop Brushes From Scratch

Final product image
What You’ll Be Creating

In this tutorial, we will create realistic watercolor brushes for Photoshop
from scanned paper using watercolor strokes and washes.

I created a Creative Masking Kit with more than 100 brushes with the same method for my GraphicRiver portfolio.


Tutorial Assets

You will need the following in order to complete this tutorial:

  • a sheet of
    watercolor paper
  • any medium-sized
  • a small jar with
  • any set
    of watercolor paints
  • a scanner that
    has the ability to scan A4-size paper

1. How to Create the Strokes on Watercolor

Step 1

Prepare your brush, paper, and paints, and then pour the water into the jar.

Preparing instruments

Step 2

Put a small amount of water on the paper with your brush.

Creating water wash on the paper

Step 3

Start adding paint to the water on the paper using the edge of your brush.

Adding paints to water

Step 4

Continue to add paint until your stroke looks like the picture below.

Finishing first brush

Step 5

Now let’s create a second watercolor stroke. Draw a long stroke with one
horizontal movement.

Creating second watercolor stroke

Step 6

To create the last one, use sharp movements by holding the brush by the

Creating the last watercolor brush

Step 7

Now we need to wait a while for it all to dry.

Drying watercolor brushes

2. How to Scan the Paper

Step 1

We need to prepare the scanner glass to avoid stains or unwanted
elements on your brushes. You can use a wet wipe to clean the glass.

Preparing scanner glass

Step 2

Once you have cleaned the scanner glass, put your paper inside the scanner.

Putting paper into the scanner

Step 3

Set the following settings in your scanner preferences: A4 paper
size, 300 dpi
. Then start scanning. The color of our scanned paper can be
different from the color of our strokes, but it is much more important for us
to preserve the structure.

Scanning the paper

3. How to Create the Strokes on Watercolor

Step 1

Use Control-N to create a new document and use
the following settings: 1500 x 1000 px; 300 dpi.

Creating new document

Step 2

Go to File > Place and put your scanned paper
inside the document.

Placing the scanned document

Step 3

Resize your scanned paper to the borders of the document, so one of the
brushes will be placed in the center, and click Enter.

Resizing the paper

Step 4

Select your layer and use the Shift-Control-Alt-B key
combination and set the following settings: Reds: 40%; Yellows: 60%;
Greens: 40%; Cyans: -25%; Blues: -25%; Magentas: 80%.

Adding blackwhite effect to the layer

Step 5

Go to Image > Adjustments > Brightness/Contrast and
use the following settings: Brightness: 35; Contrast: 25.

Changing brightnesscontrast of the layer

Step 6

Right-click on the layer and
then select Duplicate Layer.

Creating Duplicate of the layer

Step 7

Create two more duplicates of your layer using Right-click > Duplicate.

Creating Duplicates of the layer

Step 8

Make all scan layers as Invisible except the first.

Making layers invisible

Step 9

Select your first layer, go to Select > Color Range, and
click on the white area on your image. Click OK.

Selecting colors

Step 10

Now the white background of your image is selected. Delete it using the Delete button.

Deleting background of your layer

Step 11

Then click on any part of your document to Deselect the previous selection
and select your stroke using the Lasso Tool.

Selection your brush

Step 12

Go to Edit > Define Brush Preset, select any name
you want to use for your brush, and hit the OK button.

Creating first brush

Step 13

Our first brush is almost ready to use. Select Brush Instrument and
then select your watercolor stoke. After that, hit the Brush

Opening brush settings

Step 14

Put ticks on Shape Dynamics, Color Dynamics, and Transfer.

Setting parameters of the brush

Step 15

Go to the Shape Dynamics panel and set Size Jitter to 90% and Angle
 to 50%.

Setting size and angle jitters

Step 16

Go to the Transfer panel and set Opacity Jitter to 25%.

Setting opacity Jitter

Now our brush will create realistic looking washes:

Step 17

Now we need to cut the second stroke from the background as we did
before, and after that go to Edit > Define Brush Preset and
create Watercolor Brush 02.

Creating Watercolor Brush 02

Step 18

Open the brush settings and go to Dual Brush and then select
your first brush. Set Mode to MultiplySize to 450
Spacing to 72%.

Setting parameters for second brush

This way, we can combine the brushes and add grunge scrapes to our brush

Step 19

Now we need to cut the second stroke from the background as we did before, and after that go to Edit > Define Brush Preset and create Watercolor
Brush 03.

Creating third brush

Step 20

Open the brush settings and go to Shape Dynamics, and
set Size Jitter to 100% and Angle
 to 75%.

Setting size and angle jitters parameters

With these brush settings, we can create ink splashes.

Awesome Work, You’re Now Done!

Using these methods, we can create different types of watercolor brushes
for Photoshop using a scanner, watercolor paper, and paints.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this tutorial! Feel free to contact me for any help
with the tutorial. You can also check my Creative Masking Kit in my portfolio on GraphicRiver.


All-new MarTech Today guide: Enterprise Digital Personalization Tools

With advances in artificial intelligence (AI), personalization has become more than a content or product recommendation. Marketers now provide adaptive mobile experiences and website background images that closely match the visitor’s profile, as well as customized page layouts based on visitor behaviors – rather than just their demographic persona or geographic location.

MarTech Today’s “Enterprise Digital Personalization Tools: A Marketer’s Guide” examines the market for digital personalization tools and the considerations involved in implementation. The 51-page report reviews the growing market for digital analytics platforms, plus the latest trends, opportunities and challenges.

It also includes profiles of 18 leading vendors, pricing charts, capabilities comparisons and recommended steps for evaluating and purchasing. Visit Digital Marketing Depot to get your copy.

Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.

5 ways to capitalize on Google Tag Manager

Google Tag Manager (GTM) has revolutionized the way we implement scripts and tags on websites. However, many marketers aren’t fully utilizing this tool or capitalizing on its potential benefits.

Here are five easy and impactful ways to use GTM. These tips will help you improve your analytics dashboards, your SEO results and your marketing automation programs.

1. Improve the accuracy of website traffic data

Marketers often need to identify and isolate various types of traffic in Google Analytics dashboards and reports. For example, many companies want to eliminate spam or internal (employee) traffic and visits from partners. Typically, they do this by using excluding filters in Google Analytics.

Google Analytics limits the number of filters to 100. If you have a large number of internal IPs you wish to exclude, I recommend that you use GTM to implement blocking triggers. Blocking triggers are built with a custom variable and a custom event trigger.

Keep in mind that if you use a blocking trigger, these traffic types will be excluded from any or all Google Analytics views — including the unfiltered view.

2. Implement structured data

Structured data is a key way to improve organic search results, but it can be difficult for marketers to implement — especially if you need to rely on technical resources. Google Tag Manager makes it easy for non-developers to implement structured data on any page of a website.

For more information on how to do this, see “How to add schema markup to your website using Google Tag Manager.”

3. Ensure accurate indexing

With Google Tag Manager, we can define URL variables to strip out any additional parameters that might have been added. Then, we can build a custom HTML tag with JavaScript code to insert self-referencing canonical tags in the <head> section of the page. This ensures that no variation of a URL except the default one is indexed by Google.

You can follow the same logic to insert mobile switchboard tags — if your website uses a mobile subdomain.

4. Import marketing automation parameters

Most companies use marketing automation software to capture lead data and track leads through the sales funnel. With Google Tag Manager, you can easily implement lead-tracking parameters and marry this data with Google Analytics information.

With the built-in variable of first-party cookie, Google Tag Manager can pass lead ID number, along with other parameters, into Google Analytics.

5. Understand website behavior

With Tag Manager, it’s easy to track user behavior, actions and conversions with auto events. For example, you can track clicks on certain areas of a page, interactions with a video, or users’ scrolling behavior.

Auto events can also track downloads and form submissions. These insights are essential to help marketers improve engagement and conversion.

Reap the benefits of GTM

Are you at the mercy of your company’s limited technical resources? Are you waiting for web developers to implement what you need to improve marketing results?

Take control of your own destiny and learn to use Google Tag Manager. Utilizing a container like GTM can be a liberating experience for a digital marketer.

Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.

Local SEO: 7 Google My Business questions asked and answered

Consumers are increasingly searching online for shops, grocery stores, restaurants, car dealers, realtors and other businesses in their local area. Not surprisingly, four out of five people use search engines to find local information, like a company’s business hours, address, phone number, online reviews, busy times and more, according to Google.

Google research also shows that businesses with detailed, complete, up-to-date online business listings are twice as likely to be considered reputable by consumers. (If you’ve ever looked up a local business online and driven all the way across town to their location only to find that they’ve moved, you know how frustrating that can be. When that happens, do you blame Google? Nope. You blame the business. And you’ve just lost trust in the business.)

Getting a local business listed on Google My Business (GMB) and other online directories is one of the fastest and easiest ways to get a local business to start showing up for local search results on Google. Google My Business connects businesses directly with their customers — whether they’re searching on Google Search or Maps.

Most SEOs who work with local clients consider claiming their GMB listing a first step in their SEO strategy. Surprisingly, 56 percent of local businesses haven’t claimed their Google My Business listing, according to Local Business Institute.

SEOs have a lot of questions about Google My Business

At the outset, Google My Business looks pretty straightforward. You fill in the company’s information, claim and verify the listing, add information about the company, post a few images and you’re good, right? Well, not so fast. Depending on the client, their business type and their listing, GMB can get complex. Here are seven common questions about Google My Business:

Q. I’ve heard people in the search industry talk about “Google Top Contributors.” What is a Google Top Contributor, and what is their relationship with Google?

A. A Google Top Contributor is a digital marketing professional who knows the ins and outs of Google products. These Top Contributors volunteer their time to respond to questions on Google Product Forums. (Yes, there’s even a specific forum for Google My Business.) The Google Product Forums allow people to interact with a community of other users to help answer Google product questions.

If you’re interested in becoming a Top Contributor, you want to be on the forums as much as possible, answering questions and engaging in the conversations. Google is constantly watching who’s saying what and tracking everything that goes on in the various product forums.

To get started, search the forums for questions and answer the questions you have knowledge and expertise on. Once you start answering questions, you’re eligible to join the Top Contributor Program and become a “Rising Star” (the first stage to becoming a Top Contributor.) Google is on the lookout for people who are helpful and show off their product knowledge — and have a willingness to help others.

Why would anyone want to spend a lot of their personal time answering questions on a forum? Well, there are perks that go along with being a Google Top Contributor. First, you often get better access to Google itself. This means that people can contact you directly about an issue they’re having, and you can escalate it to your contacts at Google. You could also become part of beta programs, be invited to groups and Google meetings, become a Google thought leader and more. It takes a lot of time to answer questions, but if you want to be a pro in the Google world, becoming a Google Top Contributor is the way to go!

Q. I’m setting up my client’s GMB account. To do this, I’m creating a separate Gmail email address to claim their listing. Is this the right way to do it?

A. First, it’s always best if the client claims their GMB page and then makes you a manager of the page. You can then log in and optimize their Google My Business listing:

Google My Business Manager

If the client doesn’t feel comfortable claiming their listing, keep a few things in mind before you jump in on their behalf:

  1. Make sure you get express permission from them to claim their Google My Business listing on their behalf.
  2. Don’t create a Gmail email address for the setup of GMB. Instead, use the client’s domain email address as the primary email address (e.g., and add yourself as a manager of the listing. This way the client gets all communications and will always maintain control of their listing — but you will also be kept in the loop as a manager.
  3. Additionally, don’t use your personal cell phone or your agency’s number when setting up a client’s GMB account — always use the business owner’s or business’s phone number. Why? What would happen if you left your agency or the client decides to switch agencies? It may be very difficult for the client to get control of their listing. Using the business’s phone number keeps the business owner in complete control of their listing, and it will also prevent your phone number from being flagged by Google as being used too much.

Q. I have a restaurant as a client, and they’ve recently updated their menu. We noticed that there’s an outdated menu on their Google My Business Page. How did it get there, and how can I fix this?

A. Chances are, the menu information was scraped from a site called Single Platform is a site that helps restaurants and other service businesses show their menus and service listings consistently across many platforms (including Google.) Think of them as the “Yext” for menus.

To remove the Single Platform menu link from your client’s Google My Business listing, the business owner will need to contact Single Platform and request it be removed. The business listing owner should then contact Google My Business support and request it be removed.

Q. A former employee verified my client’s Google My Business listing, and we don’t know what email address they used. What should I do?

A. This is actually a common problem. Many businesses have a Google My Business listing that’s already been verified by either an employee, an agency or the owner, but they’ve forgotten which email address they used. Now that employee or agency is gone, and the business owner doesn’t know how to get access to their GMB listing.

Since the Google My Business listing is “owned” by the person who verified the listing, it’s important for the owner to get back control of their listing.

First, confirm that the business is listed on Google My Business:

  1. Go to Google My Business.
  2. Sign in with the Google account you think may have been used to claim/login to your business listing.
  3. Search for the business name and address.
  4. If the business appears in the search results, click on the listing.
  5. If you see a dialog that says that someone else has verified the business, select one of these options:

Try a different email address

If you’re like most people, you probably have more than one email address. You might have verified your business using one of your other email addresses. Try signing out, and then sign back in with one of your other Google accounts.

You will see any listings that have been verified with this Google account. If you still don’t see the business listing in any of the owner’s Google accounts, then you will need to contact the current listing owner.

Request access from the current listing owner

Google allows you to contact the current listing owner directly through Google My Business so you can request access to own or manage the business listing.

To request access from the current listing owner:

  1. Go to Google My Business.
  2. Sign in with the Google account you want to use to manage the business.
  3. Enter the name or address of the business and select it from the search results.

(Note: You might see a dialog that shows part of the email address that was used to verify the listing. The business owner might recognize that email address snippet. If the owner recognizes the email address, sign into that account to access the business listing.)

  1. Fill out the form with your contact information. The current listing owner might need to contact you, so you need to share your contact details with them.
  2. Click Submit.
  3. The current listing owner will get an email asking them to reach out to you and you’ll receive a confirmation email. Click on the link in the email to check the status of your request.
  4. Allow seven days for the current listing owner to respond to your request. If you don’t hear back from them after seven days, you can then go in and verify your affiliation with the business to get access to the business listing.

Q. There are fake reviews about my business on my Google My Business listing. Can I get them removed?

A. Google encourages businesses to ask for reviews from customers (unlike Yelp). It’s inevitable that at some point you will get a bad review from unhappy customers or people that have had a negative experience with your company. Getting these reviews removed is very difficult (freedom of speech).

If there’s a review that you feel violates Google’s review policies, you can mark the flag next to the review.

Flag Google My Business Reviews

However, typically, flagging the reviews will not get the review taken down unless the review blatantly violated Google’s review terms. Google allows anyone who has an “experience” with a business to leave a review. That means ex-employees, vendors, customers, postal carriers — just about anybody who has contact with your business can leave a positive or negative review about your company.

Since it’s not Google’s position to play “review cop,” it’s better to just try to get more positive reviews from happy customers so the negative/bogus review gets pushed down.

Q. How do you contact Google My Business Support? I’ve tried to find a way to contact them and am getting really frustrated!

A. There are several ways to reach out to Google My Business Support — but they don’t make it easy to find out how! Here are a couple of ways to reach GMB support:

Q. I’m new to Google My Business. Where is the best place to go to get information?

A. Google My Business can be overwhelming at first. To get started, you can check out Google’s GMB Guide. In this guide, you will get tips and tricks to optimizing your Google My Business Listing. Additionally, you can check out Search Engine Land’s Local category for a wide variety of news and tips.

If you run into more difficult challenges, you can post your question on the Google My Business Forum and ask (politely) for a Top Contributor’s help.

Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.

Google extends olive branch to publishers, lays out new focus on subscriptions

In a rare joint appearance, Google executives Philipp Schindler, chief business officer, and Sridhar Ramaswamy, SVP of ads and commerce, addressed a group of several dozen publishers and broadcasters at an event held at the company’s Chicago offices Tuesday. And, at that event, he extended an olive branch.

In his opening remarks, Schindler said Google returned $11 billion in ad revenues to publishers last year, while acknowledging, “We also know it has not been easy.”

Everyone in the room knew that one key reason publishers have had difficulty generating ad revenue is that Google and Facebook draw some 80 percent of the growth in digital ad dollars directly. But Ramaswamy said there are limits to what the ad ecosystem can do for publishers, adding that the industry must focus on both ads and subscriptions. Schindler said Google is committed to building out subscription programs and plans to significantly ramp investment in this area.

“We come in peace…We are all invested in seeing you [publishers] succeed” — Google chief business officer Philipp Schindler

The “leadership summit” came a day after Google announced the end of its decade-old First Click Free program in response to years of publisher complaints about the requirement to offer free access to content in exchange for Google rankings. Instead, Google said it will offer Flexible Sampling programs that give publishers more control over the subscription process without being penalized in the rankings for putting up paywalls.

Schindler touched on the three elements of Google’s new focus on subscription efforts:

  1.  Google will use machine learning to determine when to present a subscription offer instead of an ad on publisher’s sites to users deemed likely to subscribe. The system will also use publishers’ audience data to build lookalikes much in the way Google does in ad targeting, to identify new potential subscribers. This is in very early testing now, and it’s unclear exactly how this will look.
  2. Reduce friction in the subscription signup process with mobile-optimized checkout flows. Again, Google is doing something similar on the ad product side with Purchases on Google ads enabled with Android Pay. In a briefing last week, Google VP for News Richard Gringas said all subscriber data would be passed to and owned by the publishers.
  3. Help users get more from their subscriptions to boost renewal rates. For example, users might opt in to share subscription information with Google. Content from publications a user subscribes to may then show higher in Google search results for that user. Ramaswamy stressed this is “early days.”

Facebook announced this summer that it will begin testing ways to let publishers sell subscriptions in Instant Articles and place content behind a paywall after a user reads at least 10 articles.

In framing the new focus on helping publishers drive subscription revenue, Schindler said, “We come in peace,” as he splayed his fingers in the Vulcan peace sign, clearly anticipating publisher skepticism at Google’s motives. “We are here to listen to you. We are all invested in seeing you succeed.”

“We deeply value the publishing ecosystem,” said Ramaswamy later. “It’s also selfish on our part,” he acknowledged, “because Google is nothing without quality information.” Ramaswamy said Tuesday’s announcements are part of a long and ongoing effort. “The advertising ecosystem has been profitable for Google and publishers, but there are limitations. We need to pay attention to subscriptions and commerce.”

Schindler told reporters that details on how the subscription advertising program will be structured in terms of revenue splits haven’t been decided. “The plan isn’t for this to be a huge revenue driver or the next big business or Google,” he said. It could be a revenue share or some other model, but the idea isn’t to push this much beyond cost covering, said Schindler.

Why the olive branch to publishers? “I think what you’re seeing is an arc, but we also hear the feedback that this is a tough transition,” said Ramaswamy. In his talks with publisher CEOs, they kept asking, “How can you help us with subscriptions?”

Attendees at the event included representatives from Vice, The New York Times, NewsCorp, Business Insider, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today Network and Pandora, among others. The overall attitude seemed to be cautious optimism.

Other announcements made Tuesday include plans to give publishers insights into their audiences based on Google’s own data, which can then be used to package audiences in direct deals sold through DoubleClick, “insights cards” about revenue, latency, viewability trends within DFP and new brand safety controls.

[This article originally appeared on Marketing Land.]

How to Create a Quick, Glamorous Light-Bulb Text Effect in Adobe InDesign

Final product image
What You’ll Be Creating

Ever wanted to see your name up in lights? With this super-quick typography tutorial, you can! 

This type effect can be adapted to any size or word, and would make a great addition to social media images, posters, or flyers. We’ll be creating the effect in Adobe InDesign using the program’s handy Effects panel, and it only takes ten minutes to do. 

So what are you waiting for? Let’s get started!

You can find lots of fantastic fonts for creating your type effects over on GraphicRiver and Envato Elements

1. How to Create a Night-Time Backdrop For Your Effect

Step 1

Open up InDesign and go to File > New > Document. You can create the type effect at any size you wish, but here I’m going to set up an A3 landscape page with the Intent set to Print

new document

Once you’ve set up the specs for your document, go ahead and click OK

Expand the Layers panel (Window > Layers) and double-click on the Layer 1 name. In the Options window, change the name to Background and click OK.

background layer

Step 2

Expand the Swatches panel (Window > Color > Swatches) and choose New Color Swatch from the panel’s drop-down menu.

Name the swatch Background Light, and set the Type to Process and Mode to CMYK. Set the levels to C=53 M=44 Y=55 K=37, and click Add and then OK.

swatch options

Create a second new CMYK swatch, naming it Background Dark and setting the levels to C=79 M=69 Y=61 K=88.

swatch options

Step 3

Take the Rectangle Tool (M) and drag across the whole page, before setting the Fill of the rectangle to Background Light from the Swatches panel. 

light rectangle

Create a second rectangle over the top of the first, extending the left and right sides past the edge of the page by about a quarter on each side. Set the Fill to Background Dark.

dark rectangle

With the top, darker rectangle selected, go to Object > Effects > Gradient Feather. Choose Radial from the Type drop-down menu and ensure the gradient extends from lighter at the center to darker towards the outer edges. 

gradient feather

2. How to Format Your Typography

Step 1

Head back to the Layers panel and lock the Background layer. Click on the Create New Layer button at the bottom of the panel to create a second layer, and double-click to rename it Typography


Step 2

Use the Type Tool (T) to create a text frame in the center of the page. Type in the text you want to apply the lit-up effect to; here I’ve gone for ‘LIGHT’, setting it in All Caps for extra impact. 

This effect tends to work best with simple, clean sans serif fonts. Here I’ve used Acre, and I’ve used the Character panel (Window > Type & Tables > Character) to increase the Font Size to around 200 pt, as well as increasing the Tracking to 150 to space out the letters a little. 

From the Swatches panel, set the main text color to Background Light. Then click on the text Stroke Color square (which you would usually not need to use for text), and set this to Background Dark.


Step 3

With the text frame selected, go to Object > Effects > Drop Shadow. Increase the Opacity of the shadow to 75%, Spread to 10%, and add a little Noise too. 

Click on the color square next to the Mode menu to open the Effect Color window, and choose Background Light, before clicking OK

drop shadow

Click on Bevel and Emboss in the Effects panel’s left-hand menu. Set the Style to Inner Bevel and Technique to Smooth. Increase the Opacity of the Highlight to about 50% and the Shadow Opacity to about 30%. Click OK to exit the window. 

bevel and emboss
light text

3. How to Light Up Your Text

Step 1

Lock the Typography layer and create a new layer above, Light

light layer

Create a new CMYK swatch called Orange, with the values C=8 M=49 Y=79 K=1.

orange swatch

Step 2

Select the Ellipse Tool (L) and, while holding Shift, drag to create a small circle which is around the width of the stem of one of the letters. 

Set the circle’s Fill to [Paper], and position it over the top of your first letter, as shown below.

circle white

With the circle selected, go to Object > Effects > Outer Glow. Set the Mode to Hard Light, the Effect Color to Orange, and the Opacity to 100%. Increase the Spread to around 50%, before clicking OK

outer glow

Step 3

Edit > Copy and Edit > Paste the circle repeatedly, positioning each ‘lightbulb’ along the stem of the letter and spacing them as evenly as you can. 

pasted circle

Continue to Paste groups of circles, using them to fill in all the letters, creating a complete lit-up effect. 

final effect

Conclusion: Your Finished Text Effect

Your type effect’s looking fantastic—awesome job! Now you’re ready to incorporate it into another layout, or simply enjoy it on its own. 

You can find more perfect fonts for creating type effects over on GraphicRiver and Envato Elements

final effect

Hungry for more super-quick text effects? Check out these InDesign Quick Tip typography tutorials:

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