It’s rarely rock n’ roll but I like it

Everyone wants to be a rock star.

No exceptions.

Everyone dreams of being the coolest kid in class, of signing autographs, of getting all the girl/boy attention, of entertaining millions, of being the epitome of rock and roll, of getting phone calls from Keith Richards.

In most cases it’s not gonna happen unless you count rockin’ out in your lounge room late on a Friday night.

I still indulge my rock and roll fantasies as often as I can but know when to let go and focus on business.

This is an important skill because rock and roll rarely works in websites built for humans.

Or to put it another way, websites that rock are rarely rock and roll.

A mate of mine showed me some mockups for his company’s website the other day and they were super cool. There was a dark grungy background with shards, swirls, and circles all in different colours. His logo was massive and filled half the screen. The text was off centre and slightly hard to read.

It was pure rock and roll baby!

And it totally didn’t work.

My mate runs a recruitment business. He needed a website which attracted candidates, customers, and potential staff. The website had to tell a story about how they were different from the other 3,000 recruitment businesses in Australia, why employers should trust them, why they had the right jobs for candidates, and why they were a funky place to grow your recruiting sales career.

The designer had focussed on one element in the brief and produced an amazing design that did none of that. It was a rock and roll poster.

This highlights that you need to understand your business objectives and your audience before starting down the website design and branding path. Otherwise you might end up with a super cool site that turns customers away.

Rock and roll is singular, rebellious, visionary, wasted, hard to handle, unique, Hendrix.

A good business website delivers visitors what they need to find by focusing on them, who they are, what they like, what there pain-points are, what turns them on, and what gets them excited.

It might disappoint your designer but before they put pixel to photoshop tell them, “I want a website that rocks, not a rock and roll website!”

2 Comments

  1. You know the flip side of the problem though, many customers want a rock star website too-as much as you tell them that certain design elements they want are not practical, will hurt conversion, or will kill their SEO efforts-they have what they want in their head!

    Education on both sides is the key. I always try to give people what they need, not what they want, but sometimes its an uphill battle…

    FYI: there is also a big nothing image at the bottom of the post-or is that just me?

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