It’s so unbelievably exciting when you get a new website or logo design.
Perhaps you’ve invested in a web designer for the first time and you’ve got some of the page mock-ups back. Maybe you’ve done a bit of your own design handiwork in Pixlr and you’re really proud of it.
Perhaps you love the designs and perhaps you hate them. Perhaps you’re somewhere in between. Whichever way, what you’re likely to experience next is the desire to share it with people, just to “get a feel” for it.
So you ask everyone you come in contact with; family, friends, neighbours. Hell, even the postman doesn’t get away lightly as you thrust the laptop in his face and ask him deep questions about the emotions that your designs evoke, and if this design was an animal, what animal would it be?
First off, you absolutely should want to get other opinions about the design (or designs). It’s important that you do get a feel for how things go down – you are, after all, so close to your business or blog, that you can’t be all that objective on it.
However, if you’re a laptop-thrusting, deep-question-asking, feedback-hungry monster, you’re missing the point of getting feedback. Oh, and also, you’re being a dick. Stop it.
Getting feedback, really useful feedback on your new website or logo design, starts with one crucial point, and Derek Halpern of Social Triggers says it perfectly:
“Before you build an audience, you need to know who you want sitting in the chairs.”
SO. FUCKING. TRUE.
So how does that apply to asking for feedback?
Simple. Only ask people for feedback if they are in your target audience.
Yeah, husbands and nans and neighbour’s dog sitters and the team at Staines B&Q have opinions, we all do. But if your business is geared towards mothers who want ideas for entertaining their toddlers in the daytime, you can probably rule out 98% of the people you’ve spoken to in that first list because their opinions probably won’t be the same as your target audience, or y’know, the people who actually give you their money to solve their problems.
Before I get shot down for forbidding boyfriends, wives, and best mates from commenting on your designs, I do understand that it is useful to have an outside opinion – they may well think of something that you hadn’t, just don’t solely rely on their view. You will get a much juicier response from asking your people.
I have had plenty of clients who’ve said, “my husband doesn’t like this” or “my sister suggested we try this” when it comes to a design I’ve created, because they trust their ideas implicitly. And that’s great that you have so much support and involvement around you.
But this is your business and your blog and your website and your logo. At the heart of all the feedback that you get should be you.
Seriously, trust the fuck out of yourself. You’re often right.
Artwork by The Oatmeal, “How a Web Design Goes Straight to Hell”