Within each of us there are wings, and we only have to imagine in order to soar. Here at Wildwood Forest Studios our motto is, “Where your vision becomes reality.”
Where do these visions come from and how do we imagine? Is this just pie-in-the-sky and a waste of valuable time? Shouldn’t we get right down to the marketing analysis and the spread sheets, churn out some code, upload the files? Of course, all in good time, but first we need to “take a walk in the forest”.
John Muir said, “The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.” His deep love of the natural world around him gave Muir a clearer understanding of himself. So it is with us. When faced with a problem to solve, a solution to find, a web site to build, I like to start with the basics, clear my mind of the obvious, and (if only metaphorically) first take a walk in the forest wilderness.
Some would call this “thinking outside the box” ….. going beyond technology and computer code to find solutions. We sometimes tend to want to begin building the structure of a web site before spending enough time to consider the vision. But it is the vision that will lead us toward a successful outcome.
When clients come to me in search of someone to build them a web site, there will inevitably be a glimmer in their eyes, a spark born of a corporate necessity, yet hinting of a dream. Decisions must be made based on marketing needs and sound business principles, while the soul is yearning to break free of the boardroom and fly!
Some of the obvious considerations are:
- What is my purpose? (i.e.: to sell, to teach, to showcase, to entertain)?
- What look and feel will appeal to my particular audience?
- Is the expected audience technologically savvy or do they tend to be a bit technically-challenged?
- What kind of mood do I want to set for the viewers? (i.e.: thought-provoking, excited anticipation of a purchase, led to take action or join in, laughter, compassion, curiosity)?
- What “image” will create a strong visual brand for my company or organization?
But then there are also the less obvious :
- Can my visitors relate the web site to a real existence, both in terms of personality (i.e.: friendly, knowledgeable, helpful, casual, formal) and a physical presence (i.e.: a corresponding brick-and-mortar store, an office, a showroom, a clinic, a courtroom, a stage, a workshop, a person or group of people) ?
- How can I get an edge on my competitors?
- What will make my site memorable and invite repeated visits?
- Am I having fun yet? Because if I am having fun, then my visitors will too!