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Design Session At Launch Camp Boston
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Design Session At Launch Camp Boston

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Slides from my session at LaunchCamp Boston about the need for startups to use good design in all their communications media.

Slides from my session at LaunchCamp Boston about the need for startups to use good design in all their communications media.

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  • Hi everyone. I’m Margery Stegman. We’re going to be talking about how good design will help you get out there in a credible way without breaking the bank. A little about me partner at SSCD in biz since 1988 We help companies create visual tools that take their business to the next level we create online and offline media including : web sites and landing pages, identity, marketing and sales materials, presentations, and trade show booth graphics We work in the B2B space and our clients include: biotech and technology companies, nonprofit organizations, education, and service businesses such as PR and IR firms: Accion International, Satcon Technology Corporation, Neurologix, Harvard Clinical Research Institute I’d really like this to be a conversation, so I’d really like to know who’s here. Could you tell me what you do. also, how have you used design in your business? what have you paid for, what have you done yourself. what do you want to learn more about? I’m planning to stop after each section to take questions.
  • I like this quote because it captures the essence of what we do and what we, as designers, have to keep in mind when we do work for our clients.
  • We’ve all seen web sites and marketing materials cluttered up with all kinds of things people think enhance their message, when it’s really just the opposite taking place. Design should engage the audience you’re trying to reach and inform them in a memorable way.
  • What is the value of good design to you? Is it important to your business? How? Here’s what I’m hoping to cover…
  • It’s a little hard to say what one person should pay for and another do themselves I hope this overview will help you decide what’s right for you.
  • Here are just some of the ways design can help meet business goals? enhance and elevate perception (internally and externally) generate more web site traffic and consequently more leads communicate complex information understandably inform prospects and customers clearly and consistently attract unanticipated audiences who might not have otherwise given your offering a moment’s notice Can anyone suggest other examples?
  • Perhaps I’m stating the obvious, but to have the greatest impact every touch point with your public needs to be consistent. So what are the basic tools you need to get started with?
  • All of these things help establish your brand. I highly recommend you pay for a logo, a business card and your web site. If you have to skimp at first, you may be able to do the others yourself. And a bit later I’ll be giving you some design pointers that will help you do that.
  • Of course, once you’re on your way you’ll need more ways to communicate. Here’s a list of things you can add as you grow.
  • I want to run through some examples of basic tools, and give you some facts about what we think about when we design them. Also, if anyone has questions about their existing site we can go online and look it.
  • Logos 3 tenants of a good logo are: meaning . Your logo will convey what your company does. It will be quickly identifiable. simplicity . It will be rendered as the essence of an idea with as few elements as possible. reproduction . The artwork must be well crafted and produced to work in high and low resolution and in a variety of media. It should work well in b+w as well as color. There are two types of logos. Typographic, what we call a logotype. The visual is the company or product name, or initials. It might stand alone or be embellished with graphic elements to add meaning or emphasis. Symbolic/Pictorial is a graphic representation of an idea. could be illustrative [such as a veterinarian using an illustration of a dog and cat.] an icon. Here are a couple examples…
  • Logotype Duralflow The company does wastewater recycling for industrial applications. They manufacture a membrane, depicted in the O, that removes metals and other toxins so that the water can be reclaimed and reused. You can see how the waves change as they exit the W to suggest the cleaned water.
  • Symbolic Itero A specialty pharmaceuticals company that develops biosimilar molecules for therapeutics. The shaded circles suggest variation in the molecules. The globe represents their global manufacturing partner. I’m going to pause here to see if anyone has questions.
  • We all know that web sites are an absolute necessity. Let’s look at a few facts. ¾ of web users make judgments about the credibility of an organization based on THE DESIGN of its web site the vast majority of businesses use the internet to research and find potential vendors . and most Web users scan rather than read [Jakob Nielsen] Users are impatient. They forage for information. They’re fidgety. Let me read you a quote: "If I have to sit here and read the whole article, then I'm not productive.” Here’s another statement, “ If it doesn't come right out at me, I'm going to give up on it.” The more you say, the more people tune out your message. Excessive word count and worthless details are making it harder for people to extract useful information. Studies find that removing half of a website's words will double the amount of information that users actually get . [Jakob Nielsen study] Are you all familiar with the process for developing a web site? user research, architecture and navigation, design, prototyping, image acquisition, development, SEO We have an example in the resources section of our web site.
  • This one is hard for me to wrap my head around. A research team found that people can make rough decisions about a Web page's visual appeal after being exposed to it for as little as 1/20 of a second Our brain today is the same as the human brain 10,000 years ago . Hence, human beings are remarkably good at hunting the woolly mammoth . When it comes to abstract thinking, humans have extremely limited brainpower. Our short-term memory holds only about 7 chunks of information, and these fade from your brain in about 20 seconds . So when we’re bombarded with multiple abstract or unusual pieces of data in rapid succession we forget and lose interest. The key, then is to design for cavemen and their literal-minded and limited-capacity brains. Keeping these facts in mind, let’s look at a few sites.
  • Can you tell what this company does and what their primary benefit is within a few seconds? PAUSE (they’re an IT company) What about the navigation? How easy is it to figure out where to go? In this second example you know they are an IT company, and you know their primary audience and the benefit they offer. The navigation is easy to use. The inside pages have a distinct information hierarchy and secondary navigation that’s easily accessible. It makes use of a simple diagram to illustrate the page topic, “Infrastructure management”. PAUSE for questions
  • We see them everywhere. And technology like YouTube and Flickr have enabled anyone with a digital camera to put them everywhere. Sometimes its hard to remember what a good image is. all imagery should be high-quality: high-resolution, well-lit photography, professional illustration (not clip art), appropriate to the subject: not eye candy or a distraction To illustrate what I’m talking about, let’s use the concept of partnership and an image of a handshake to communicate that idea.
  • Please, do not use this. There is nothing worse, than a poorly shot or composed photo or other cheesy image. And not this either. The color and lighting are an improvement over the previous one, but it’s predictable and static. The halo around their hands makes me wonder if they’ve been blessed by a divine being. What should we look for instead?
  • 1) a better choice for showing a handshake close-up. It’s well-lit and dynamic. Notice that the hands aren’t quite in contact yet. 2) here’s a different perspective. 3) and another. I really like the composition, though it could have more color from my point of view. 4) this one is a little edgier. So if you use images, spend time choosing the best you can find. Does everyone know where to get stock photos and illustrations? getty images istock photo media bakery PAUSE FOR QUESTIONS
  • We’ve all been to our share of boring presentations . Though I’m sure not today. Sooner or later you’ll need to do them whether to raise money or demonstrate your products or capabilities. Here’s a few things to keep in mind: Have a big idea and story to tell. Stick to the rule of 3 because the human mind can only absorb three big chunks of information in the limited amount of time you’ll have. Ideas are best remembered if they are picture-superior. We remember 65% of the images we see, and only 10% written or verbal. The master of presentations: Steve Jobs I have a before and after to show you.
  • simplify your visuals Bullet points are the least effective way to deliver information: The default template in PowerPoint is a document. This is not a visual aid. Did you know that your audience can read the slide more quickly than you can explain it? This before slide is cluttered, makes poor use of color and is hard to follow The new version uses simple graphics to depict how the product works. The presenter built each element as he explained the process. We could spend a lot of time on this topic, which we don’t have today, but I can take a couple of questions.
  • Once you’ve established a look and feel to go with your messaging, build on it . Consistency is key. and it will save money because each subsequent tool you add will be an extension of what exists. That means less design time and the potential to reuse assets like photographs.
  • This example shows a logo, print pieces, a trade show booth and the web site. They were done over time and each was built on the ones before it. Does anyone have questions about the examples I’ve shown?
  • Investing in design is an investment in your business. Hopefully, you’re at the point where you need a designer’s help. I’m going to touch on a few key points that will help you have a great working relationship with your designer.
  • As a designer and a business person, I want your goals to be met. To do that, I need to understand your business, who you are, what your values are, who you’re trying to reach, why what you offer is better than your competition. We take that information and write a creative brief. It’s the foundation for where we’re headed over the next weeks and months. A strategic framework that guides both of us. Another key element is a detailed project schedule. It keeps everyone on track. Getting off schedule means missed deadlines and potentially additional cost.
  • Be as detailed as possible when defining what you want. It’s the difference between: I need a web site vs we are launching a new company in the social media space that will enable entrepreneurs to network online If you haven’t done a project like it before , tell the designer upfront that you need help. I’m always willing to help educate people about what’s involved and give them a general idea of numbers. I know most designers will do the same thing. Keep in mind that what you want and what you need may have very different costs associated with them.
  • As a project moves along, it’s sometimes easy to forget original goals and strategies. Sure, there may be a shift in thinking, but unnecessary diversions add time and money. (Avant story) If you have a creative brief, use it to reflect back. It will help you…and me…stay focused. Let’s talk a little about feedback We also need your input on the concepts we present, the images we suggest, and the emphasis we put on various elements. We have a common goal. Here are some suggested ways to tell us what we need to change: this helps : people need to read this first rather than : move this here, change this font I’ll know what you need : the photo should show a research technician loading an array this will worry me : i don’t like that photo, i’ll send you one my brother took with his new digital camera Take advantage of your designer’s experience and let them do their job.
  • Investing in design is an investment in your business With any project there are a variety of components that will contribute to the cost. For example, launching a web site includes all kinds of individual tasks that will each need budget allocations. There are costs associated with the user research, content, architecture, design, prototyping, image acquisition, development, SEO, etc. design takes time. here are some examples: simple logotype: 20 to 30 hrs 15 – 25 pg web site: 65 to 100 hrs for design, 50 to 70 hrs for development presentation with 30 slides: 60 to 90 hrs If you have numbers in mind then share that information. Often, your budget is less than what would be ideal. A reputable design firm is not in business to take advantage of you. We want to do the best possible job and will work with you to figure out cost effective ways to make your project successful. You get what you pay for: more experience, better process, higher quality work, larger network of suppliers, better results hourly rates can range from $50/hr to more than $200. If you just don’t have any funds…
  • If you do it yourself use professional design software not Word or PPT Type Word and PPT: The software can not read all the information embedded in the font, so it won’t look as good as in design software Control It’s very difficult to control the layout in these programs Not for offset printing They aren’t postscript compatible so a print piece is likely to have jaggy type QUESTIONS
  • QUESTIONS?
  • Thank you so much for coming today. I hope the information I’ve presented has been useful. Feel free to contact me if you have any other questions we didn’t get to today or if I can be of help you create visual tools to take your business to the next level. How many of you make presentations and use PowerPoint or other software? I have some examples of dos and don’ts for anyone who’s interested in how to be more engaging when they present.

Design Session At Launch Camp Boston Design Session At Launch Camp Boston Presentation Transcript

  • what good design can do for your business
    • and how to go about getting it
  • “ Design is art that people use.” Ellen Lupton, graphic designer, writer, curator, and educator
  • Design is not ornament.
  • What is the value of good design to you?
  • Agenda
    • What design can do for your business
    • Tools in your arsenal
    • Examples good and bad
    • Choosing and working with a designer
    • How to think about budget
  • How can good design help meet business goals?
  • YOUR VISUAL IDENTITY ^ integrated
  • Visual tools starter package
    • logo
    • stationery package (print, electronic)
    • web site
    • presentation template
    • factsheet
  • Visual tools growth package
    • marketing and sales materials
    • landing pages
    • blog design
    • facebook and twitter pages
    • trade show booth graphics
    • advertising
    • video template
  • EXAMPLES ^ good and bad
  • The foundation of an identity and brand LOGOS symbolic/pictorial typographic
  • Logos
  • Logos
  • They may come, but will they stay? WEB SITES 75% ¾ of web users make judgments about the credibility of an organization based on THE DESIGN of its web site 79% most Web users scan rather than read 83% the vast majority of businesses use the internet to research and find potential vendors
  • They may come, but will they stay? 0.005 second people can make rough decisions about a Web page's visual appeal after being exposed to it for as little as 1/20 of a second [Jakob Nielsen]
  • Web Sites
  • Worth a thousand words IMAGES message appropriate high-quality
  • What’s wrong with this picture?
  • What makes this better? iimages © getty images
  • Engage them, or put them to sleep tell a story the rule of 3 pictures dominate PRESENTATIONS
  • Presentations
  • build your brand save money INTEGRATED VISUAL TOOLS
  • Integrated visual tools
  • CHOOSING A DESIGNER ^ and working with
  • Work with your designer as a business partner.
  • Be clear about your project goals.
  • Communicate the problem, not the solution.
  • Be upfront about your budget.
  • But if you do it yourself
    • use professional design software
      • InDesign
      • Illustrator
      • PhotoShop
      • Dreamweaver
    • do not use Word or PowerPoint for print projects
  • Resources
    • Web Design for ROI, Turning browsers into buyers and prospects into leads. , Lance Loveyday and Sandra Niehaus
    • usability.gov The US government’s web site on usability. Excellent resource.
    • useit.com Jakob Nielsen’s site. He writes about usability information and research in his Alertbox columns.
    • Slide:ology, the Art and Science of Creating Great Presentations. , Nancy Duarte. The designer behind Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth”.
    • Presentation Zen. Gar Reynolds’ blog on issues related to professional presentation design.
    • The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs., Carmine Gallo. There’s a very good webinar too.
  • Visual tools that take your business to the next level ™ Margery Stegman [email_address] 781.721.0172 schenkelstegman.com linkedin.com/in/margerystegman twitter.com/margery_s