Hold the phone! No, literally hold it and use some of these digital strategies for your business.
Designers construct our beautiful websites, apps and online products. They help us to navigate the choppy waters that flow between our first interaction with a design and eventually taking positive action.
They're basically our 'digital architects' + they've had a hand in everything you see and do online - from shopping for your weekly beer supply to finding and streaming your favourite podcast.
THEY'RE THE BEST.
But, okay...I confess, I'm going to criticise UX designers a teeny tiny bit - it'll only be quick though I promise.
Right, some designers, not all, but some can't write for shit.
And writing good copy is ESSENTIAL to good UX design. Unfortunately, the focus can be on graphics, website layout and the features and gimmicks that are scattered all over its pages. If the copy isn't effective then designer's efforts can suffer and people won't be compelled to interact with physical and digital products.
The preoccupation with digital interface means that copy gets sidelined.
Writing good copy should be an essential skill or at least a priority in the modern UX designer's arsenal.
The thing is that designers and copywriters have so much in common:
- They're thinking about the motivations of users.
- They're trying to imagine the journey a user will take.
- What will compel users to take action?
- How will users react to certain features?
- What is stopping a user from moving forward?
The mind-sets are so similar, as designers and copywriters try to work out what to give more weight and how to create seamless user experiences.
Effective, well-written copy allows brand's to develop their unique voice and to tell their story. Story-driven copy is the way to elicit emotional responses from users and combining this with good design can lead to higher conversion rates.
One clear example where design and copy intersect is chatbot construction. We're seeing more and more chatbots on the scene and they're going to continue to pop up left, right and center. What differentiates good chatbots from bad ones? Superb design and engaging copy. One without the other doesn't work.
Finding a UX designer who is just as good at writing copy is rare though. Both skills can take years to craft and are really time intensive to learn, but being a designer who prioritises good copy and acknowledges its importance can automatically put you ahead of the competition.
Your UX design depends on good copy. Let me help: firstname.lastname@example.org
Put your hand up if you're sick to death of hearing the title of this blog post - *THROWS HAND INTO CEILING*
It's what we Brits have had to hear on loop in the run-up to the triggering of Article 50. With varying levels of inaccurate bollocks attached to it and a rotating door of grey, middle-class men saying it - the idea that we might walk away with 'no deal' in Brexit negotiations is being flirted with.
Now, this would be really, really bad. We'd fall back on WTO tariffs which would slap disastrous amounts of dosh and red-tape on our exports and just be generally shit for consumers and producers.
So when it comes to our nation's economy, no deal would probably be worse than a bad one.
But that got me thinking (dangerous).
When it comes to freelancing, no deal is often the best option.
There are so many warning signs when it comes to bad clients that I can usually tell after a couple of emails if someone's going to be difficult.
- Being asked to do a free test article is one of them. Now, I don't mind offering if I think it's appropriate but it's a bit cheeky to ask. I'll happily share examples of my work, which I think give you a clear idea about my style. You wouldn't get in a taxi, ask to be driven somewhere and then MAYBE you'll pay for it if they get you there, so don't do it to writers.
- People that clearly don't acknowledge the skill it takes to write well or the value it creates. If you think writing is easy and not worth paying good money for then we probs won't get on. I've worked hard to learn what it takes to write well, so demeaning that effort is offensive.
- Not being prepared to pay a reasonable sum for writing is also a big warning sign. I need to eat, man. Research, writing and editing takes time, so respect the craft.
- Expecting me to magically know all about your brand and have as much knowledge as you about it WITH NO INFORMATION PROVIDED. How on earth can I write good copy if you're not giving me what I need, brah? I know I said I'll write for you, but that doesn't mean I have to write your brief for you too.
No deal, mate.