Rod Aparicio

Mar 8, 2022

The First Thing To Work On When You're About To Design Your Project. Hint: It's Not The Design.

If you want to design your website, brochures, book, business, etc. THE LAST THING to start with is "DESIGN".

It's like aiming at every direction and trying to move in all ways at the same time. It creates confusion, frustration and slows the process down.

This is how it feels:

  • Teams working in isolated pods (they're not really working together, but putting things together.)

  • Work gets exponentially overlapping with lots of back and forth.

  • The project ends up looking like Frankenstein.

  • Everyone tinkers all over the place... indefinitely.

  • There's a higher focus on nice-to-haves than what's necessary.

  • Highly inefficient and non-innovative at the same time.

  • No one is able to say "No, this makes no sense", because there's no point of reference.

You might find this conversation quite familiar:

- Let's design our website!
- Yay!
- So —which images do we get? What mockups do we use? What colors?
- Here. How do you like this visually?

- Yah. That looks pretty. Approved!
- Let's think
now of how we can fit the content and everything else in this dope design. "Pretty" will make it work.

How to fix it?

Start with your content.

Four questions to get you started:

  1. What is the main message you want to convey?

  2. What's the hierarchy of your message?
    What's the big picture, the medium one and the actions to take?

  3. What's the main goal of your pages?
    To sell more quantity of your prods?
    To subscribe?
    To join your movement?
    To join your mailing list?
    To buy something specific?
    To get a call with you?
    To download something?

    You have to set which one is the priority. One. Then you can figure out which ones follow up.

  4. Do you want them to roam around or is it a guided tour?
    Your website can be a collection of landing pages, so that your users can get directed to specific places —avoid analysis paralysis— and take determined actions. Or...
    Roaming around... good luck with what you need them to do. They might explore, get information overload and do nothing... or simply get confused. Or leave.

Are you doing any of these when you're designing your projects?

That's my rant for today.
Have a good one!

Rod Aparicio

Brand Strategy Advisor for Indie Consulting Firms.