Keeping a Design Process as Focussed as Possible

21st June 2018 / 5 minute read

design process blog

Keeping a design process focussed is key, but how can you do so? Here are the three steps we take with our clients to focus their initial design ideas.

1. Focus is imperative in design.

design process

Introductory design meetings with clients can begin rather sporadic and jumbled. Everyone wants to lay out every single idea that comes to mind. We totally get it, you’re excited. Hell, we’re excited too, but there needs to be a structure to the design process, and a focus.

We’ll listen to your ideas and then condense them. We’re here to nail down the core of the project. A great way to do this is to describe the goal of the project in a simple sentence.

For example:

“This website will be used to announce a new product at the London Design Show.”

2. Every design project is problem solving.

design process 2

Our second step is to define and diagnose the problems we could encounter by accomplishing our goal in step 1. The problems can vary from technical to psychological issues. But that’s why we’re here, to fix these problems.

Who is the target audience?

There’s normally more than one target audience for a product. The best way to work around this is to focus on the primary three, and prioritise the most important one, e.g., the target that will provide the biggest volume of conversions/sales.

What does the product need in order to communicate with its audience?

It’s important to understand how the user should be feeling once they have reached the end of your user journey. Using our design skills to provide clarity, we create a hierarchy of messaging that needs to be communicated. The top priority should always become a focus through the varied design stages.

How do we execute this target communication?

Depending on the context, a viewer will have a different state of mind and attention span. Is this a pre-roll ad on youtube? Well then, you need to hook them in 5 seconds or they’ll skip the ad. Are they sitting in a convention hall or theatre? Here you can take your time.

Now that you’ve identified what to say, who to say it to, and how you need to say it, you have identified the challenge. This gives both us and our client clarity on the overall project and the waypoints that have been put in place to guide us through to our end goal.

3. Creating a simple recap allows you to have a checklist for the entire design process.

Creative parameters help to define what it is your client wants. If for example they ask for an ‘epic website’, some designers might walk away with tunnel vision, asking no further questions. But, epic in their eyes might mean back to back Eastenders, where as to me, epic is Guardians of the Galaxy.

Subjective words aren’t helpful, and setting out parameters removes the unneeded back and forth design prototypes between design teams and clients. Set and leverage these parameters.

CREATIVE PARAMETERS:

– Use a lot of negative space

– Use 60% red brand color, avoid competitor color green

– Need to show features A, B, C with HD shots

– Use line art illustrations vs. photographs of people

Fancy working with us?

We’re always open to new and exciting design projects. Drop us an email to hello@equalscollective.com if you require some pro support with your design project!

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