That’s right – great design work can sometimes be counterproductive to effective storytelling. Seth Godin addresses this point in his blog on The first question every web site designer must ask. His basic conclusion is that some organizations need for the public to stand in awe of the design, but some don’t. The design can distract people from the story. How do you feature the right stuff?
- Begin with the content in mind.
- Consider the end user at every turn.
- Focus on ease of navigation before style.
- Trust the client / organization when it comes to their story.
- Choose your style wisely: loud, elegant, clean, techie, etc.
- Strip the design down to that which is necessary to the brand story.
- Respond to user feedback, but get a large sampling before making major changes.
Your portfolio is actually the last of all factors to consider, so don’t fall to the temptation to use someone else’s project to feature your own genius. But don’t forget to entertain your inner genius either. Be great, but be humble.