Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Is Your Baby Ugly?

I recently sat in on a session led by Tim Ash of Site Tuners, who opened up the session by stating, “The baby is ugly.” Well, that got everyone’s attention. Tim went on to say that so many of us are so emotionally tied to our websites that we can’t objectively admit when they aren't working anymore.

We had just launched an update to our own website, and as Tim went through his seven deadly sins I had to confess to myself that we violated several of his concepts.  I realized that he is right in so many cases about the real functionality of most sites. Too many sites are built by designers to look pretty, but are terrible when it comes to the usability of the customer. 

It made me wonder if many of the same truths apply to social media. You always hear that "content is king.” I agree that rich, relevant content is crucial, but as I scan my Tweetdeck channels I see so many that post things only relevant to them. Is that really what followers want to read over and over? I think not. I also struggle with how to post the right content for all the different types of followers I have on Twitter. I think, like with websites, that some people have to admit their 140 characters just look ugly — no call to action, bad or broken links, strange shortening and poor content.

So, for 2012 I am taking off my rose colored glasses and making an effort to really look at our online marketing from our customer’s point of view. I hope we can consistently birth beautiful babies!


  1. Thanks. Hopefully I can live up to my post.

  2. From my Facebook page a friend wrote - "Going through re-birthing pains at moment... Hopefully for last time as doing, as doing a handover too". Even though I don't have kids, from my experience launching a website does feel like giving birth.

  3. I like to think of designing landing pages like a first date.. make a great impression and get them to ask for a 2nd date..

  4. Eva, that is a great way to think of it. You got to want visitors to want more. Fabulous!