Good Design is a Collaborative Effort

We’ve often said (and we really mean it!) that UBU prefers to work as an extension of our clients’ marketing departments. The main difference between building a website and building a brand is the long-term mindset. You have to be invested in the success of your project – not just in the launch of a pretty website, but in reaching the target audience on multiple levels and through multiple channels. Building a brand takes time and persistence.

Our recent partnership with has reinforced these ideals for our team. This project has truly been a collaborative experience. Here is a general overview of how the project unfolded …

Our client presented his website idea (a graphical mockup) and gave us a few sites to reference for design and content. He knew what colors and fonts he wanted to use; he had a “placeholder” logo that he was pretty happy with; and he knew what type of content he wanted to present and how it should be organized on the site. He also knew that he wanted a WordPress-based site with a CMS backend so that he could manage the content on an ongoing basis.

Honestly, this is A LOT more than we get from a lot of clients! So while part of our team got to work choosing a WordPress theme that could be modified to match our client’s design idea; I just sat staring at the logo. It didn’t “pop” for me and I wanted something more memorable. And I didn’t like the kerning of the text. How do you tell a client that you don’t like their logo?

I didn’t exactly tell him. (After years of working as a creative director for multiple companies, I have learned to tread lightly when criticizing the boss’s design!) What I did do was mock up some alternatives. I got the design team involved by giving them the fairly ambiguous direction of “make me a little TV icon that has some character.” Logo Design

And, happily, the client liked one of the alternative designs enough to put his own spin on it! He created a 3D version of the logo, and then created an animation that is now being used as the intro to all his weekly Netcast segments. Success!

And so the project proceeded … like a game of web design ping pong, with each side – client and web developers – tossing in ideas and fine tuning results. This is the part of my job that I absolutely LOVE! I love contributing to the development of a brand; seeing the website launch and the audience build; following the progression of an idea into the establishment of a viable, profit-earning business.

The rest of the team got to have some fun too! Web architect and WordPress theme bender extraordinaire, John Esling, is also an accomplished musician (you can check out his personal Guitar Slinger blog here: He was called upon to create some instrumental music to use as a backing track for the weekly Netcasts. You can hear it at the end of Episode 001 and Episode 002.

Hey, even the cats got to get involved! Loves Cats

And as we hoped, the work is not done just because the website has been launched. The UBU team will be recommending content for the site; promoting the site on social media channels (so go ahead and like on Facebook, follow on Twitter, and subscribe to the YouTube channel); and writing some more music tracks to be used on the weekly show.

The gracious folks at have even agreed to write some content for the UBU blog!

A true collaborative effort!


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