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Educating Clients: a Tricky Process

November 14th, 2012 by
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Sometimes clients don’t know a lot about the design world when they make that first phone call (and they don’t have to – that’s what we’re for!). But if they don’t have the words to explain what they are looking for there just might be a few hiccups in the process. So, we like to start a conversation with them, and ultimately educate them about the wide world of design and the web.

It’s a lot like going to get a haircut, and not knowing the name of the style you want (or even worse, thinking it’s called something else). Great hairdressers can help you tell them exactly what you want, but if they don’t ask you the right questions, you end up paying for a haircut you don’t like. We’ve all heard the horror stories – expensive websites needing to be rebuilt from scratch, logos brought to the final stage and then scrapped entirely, or getting to the end of the process only to have the client say “I just don’t like it”.

Some of our most recent “new client education” experiences have been based around responsive website design. Responsive is still the new kid in school – you know, the one whose name you can’t remember just yet. For us, this simply means that our first phone call is a few moments longer than it was last year as we help the client decipher their thoughts into our strange language of the web.

Client Education: Let’s Start a Conversation

In order to make sure that we deliver a product that meets the clients needs, we need to educate them about the process as we go along. By giving them the right terminology, they have an easier time communicating with us, and we have an easier time delivering what they want. Sometimes this can be difficult, but we think it delivers all around good results.

Over the next few weeks we will be posting a series of posts all about this topic, and sharing some of our secrets to getting just the right information out of the client and into our heads. But, before we dive into our methods, we want to know: what’s your stance on educating your clients? Do you do it, and if so, how? Do you feel that it’s their responsibility to ask for what they need, or do the right questions on your end make for a better experience? We’d love to hear your opinions, horror stories, successes and more in the comments. Let’s start a conversation!

About 

Kandra is influenced in her design by everything from Hubble Space Telescope imagery to the strawberry plants in her garden. Her concepts are known for their characteristic combination of warmth, simplicity and functionality, and for their strong resonance with her clients’ brand and corporate identities.

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