Design starts in a text editor

Why a text editor can force you as a designer to focus on the main thing: content.

In times where Dribble is making design «fancy», «awesome» and «gorgeous» (here is a great article from Intercom about that topic) — we should not forget the main target of our job:

A designer helps companies communicating!

As you know, we are a small full-service communication agency based in Switzerland. We are juggling a lot of projects in parallel. We are active on Twitter, Facebook and check out many blogs and websites daily. On one hand we need this inspiration to perform in a brilliant way. On the other hand this also creates our main problem: focussing on one single thing, the client — without losing our attention.

A client expects that we help them solve a problem in communication. Either it is a website, an app, a logo, a poster or a business card — at the beginning there is a need. And this need has to fit in one word, sentence or paragraph.

Thats why we started to use a simple text editor for the very first step of a new project. Why?

  1. We are able to focus. We always type out the content which will later be used in a simple text editor. There we have words — not design. This helps us doing what our client is expecting from us: doing communication.
  2. Integrating the client. Before we start creating the product we finish the product’s message. By doing so we force our client to focus on content as well — there is no «fancy» design around yet. This prevents them from losing focus because they either go crazy about the first design proposal or are disappointed by it.
  3. There are many cool text editors. If you’re not happy with your current text editor, try Writer or Draft.

After this process, we have our client’s content ready. That’s when we open our Photoshops, our Illustrators and our Sketches and start designing. Our «Content-First» workflow works well for us. It is better structured, faster and feels more natural over all.

Dear designers, give it a go. It will make your life much easier.

Original publiziert auf Medium. Dieser Artikel ist leider nur in Englisch verfügbar. Hier gibt es noch mehr Informationen zu Writer.

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