Seeing Is Believing
The first marketing agency I worked as a project manager, I learned rather quickly my drawing skills come handy when communicating with graphic and web designers and clients who are visual communicators.
Talking about a design project is tedious and there is a lot of grey area left to interpret subjectively.
Of all the marketing related projects I help manage, I find client-designer mismatch the hardest to navigate. Conceptualizing and giving feedback to design drafts in written format, as an email or text comment is often painfully inefficient to me. I'm quick to put a pencil to paper in an attempt to draw out what I'm trying to say, which I find designers are a lot more receptive to. Over the years, I've adopted a few helpful tools I use depending on the purpose. Here are some of those tools and how I used them.
Paper, Pencil and Flipagram
Talley's Meat and Three
When Shoryuken Ramen partners Jessica and Josh Bufford opened Talley's Meat and Three, they had to explain to me what "Meat & 3" meant: classic Southern style supper comprised of one meat/protein, three side dishes and bread.
Using Paper app and Pencil stylus, I put together social media notes and suggested hashtag campaign #mymeatandthree to engage audience to share their unique dining experience. I wanted to write text and use drawings to show examples as I go. But I also searched and found inspiration reference photos on Instagram and screen captured them to share as well. Here is a page of my note:
Another strategy I proposed to showcase the concept of Meat & 3 was a stop motion video showing how different each meal combination could be, reinforcing #mymeatandthree idea. On a snow day in December hanging out with my neighbor Ariel eating tiny M&Ms, I made a Flipagram video to show Jessica how it would apply for Talley's Meat & 3.
Ariel is a product designer, so she helped a lot in troubleshooting and styling. A few things we learned in our first try:
1. Take all photos in Square photo layout (for Instagram) to avoid cropping.
2. Mark plate position so it doesn't jump from one shot to another.
3. Add more time for a shot (ending shot here) by using copies of the same photo.
Six months later, Talley's Meat & 3 video series came into fruition. Instead of hiring a photographer or videographer, Jessica designed her own special tripod for photo taking, edited and produced all of her videos herself. This was the aftermath of our photo shoot:
And here is one of the videos for Talley's Meat & 3! Keep following Talley's Instagram (@talleysrva) to see the rest of videos in the series or better yet, go and order your own #mymeatandthree plate!
Here is another example of Paper and Pencil just for fun! I made this to explain how a ramen bowl gets assembled to new servers at Shoryuken Ramen. To achieve this in any other way would have been step-by-step photos, then captioning them individually. Much faster, fluid and effective this way.
Next week, more design tools for non-designers and how I used it for LivingSwellRVA.com, more specifically, to capture my sister Seo's personality perfectly in the logo.
Questions? Comments? Let me know what else you would like to see by leaving comments below. Want to work with me to grow your business? Email me and let's have coffee.