Would you do business with you?

“A giant pitfall in the way small companies and individuals market themselves, particularly online or in presentations, is that they’re often cheesy, ugly or unreadable. I don’t think people deliberately set out to be ugly, but they end up that way. And a quick look at your own buying behavior should tell you that you don’t often buy from the sketchy-looking sites, ads and media that are often pitched at you.” (Seth Godin)

The above is a little taste of Seth’s recent article on how to get better at seeing certain things for perhaps what they really are. It sounds pretty obvious, doesn’t it? And by obvious I mean basic, as in “I already know this.” When marketing a product or service, who in their right mind would aim for unattractive, right? Then how is it that there are so many, as Seth notes, sketchy-looking sites, ads, etc. out there?

How to move forward? In my opinion, you first need the will to move forward. And, suggests Seth, a different way of seeing. The person who taught Seth how to see, as per his own admission, is John McWade. John is a truly an iconic teacher and leader in the graphic design community. He just recently released a new book (I highly recommend it) titled Before & After: How to Design Cool Stuff. (You can read more about John and see some of his work on his website for the Before & After magazine.) Here is a tiny excerpt from John’s new book:

“There is a process to design, and the key step is the first one: Decide what needs to be achieved. Ask, in other words, where are we going?Knowledge is about the basics. Basics are called basic not because they are simple-headed but because they are the basis, or foundation, of every design.”

My parting suggestion #1: Upgrade your thinking. You are leading you. Expose yourself to new books.

My parting suggestion #2: Dig into it deeper please. Ask yourself, “How much do I really know about ______?”