The first step in this and every project we take on is to get a real sense of who our client is. In this case it was Josh Linkner.
If you’re from the Detroit area, have any interest in web promotions, are looking for some VC funding or happen to be a marketer at a FORTUNE 500 company, there’s a good chance you’ve heard of Josh. We knew the basics, but we wanted to dig deeper to get to know the story BEHIND the man. We started from the very beginning and we can say that at this point, we probably know Josh better than his own mother.
First steps. First word. First date. First company. First book. First website promoting him as a speaker. It was a lot to take in, but in the end, we were left with one VERY simple conclusion about who Josh Linkner is: The rock star of the national speaking circuit for creative thinking.
SET A GOAL
This is where our strategy to create a killer website to promote his speaking began. And Josh was more than willing to indulge us in our new theory. So, we set a goal: Sell Josh as the must-have speaker. Do it in zero clicks.
GET TO KNOW THE AUDIENCE
Zero clicks is a lofty goal, but we were all on the same page, so we forged ahead. We got to know the audience for the site – the conference planner that would be coming to judge Josh’s knowledge and credibility. We called her “Mary the Meeting Planner” and we called her often. It was necessary to get inside her head and figure out what would REALLY do the convincing. Expertise. Enthusiasm. Examples. Critical acclaim.
BUILD A FRAMEWORK
To present Josh as the obvious choice, we created a content strategy that demonstrates his focus on creativity, his entrepreneurial spirit, and his credibility in the business world. Then we developed an information hierarchy and started to collect content.
Blog entries, bios, videos, reviews. We created wireframes to show how everything might work together, always focusing on the almighty homepage. We would not forget our goal. Set the stage. Achieve credibility. Do it on page one. Content wouldn’t do it alone. What we needed was a way to communicate Josh visually. A color palette, a wordmark, a font, an image. We were building a brand.
CAPTURE THE ESSENCE OF JOSH
Fortunately, we knew Josh well enough to capture his essence and he trusted us enough to do so. We started with a wordmark. A personal logo that would communicate Josh. There were several concepts presented, but the one selected spoke to the power of the idea.
We focused on how this mark would be used on the website and incorporated it into idea boards. The direction: Clean, Colorful, Punchy. With larger than life photography, rotating quotes and prominent reviews.
THE FINAL PRODUCT
Designs were merged. Ideas were sparked. The wireframes met the idea boards and a website was born.
So how did it all turn out? 10 fingers. 10 toes. And the most important critic loves it!
Here’s the review from Josh:
“Team Skidmore – I just wanted to thank you again for doing an OUTSTANDING job. Simply put, you guys hit it out of the park. Your strategic work was spot-on, your visual design was gorgeous, and your support and responsiveness were unparalleled. The finished product is something we are incredibly proud of, and only was able to come to life based on your passion and talent. It was an A+ performance on all levels, and we are grateful for the opportunity to collaborate. Naturally, I HIGHLY recommend Skidmore.” -Josh Linkner