Marcel van Werkhoven

COO at Studio Projectie Joined about 2 years ago

  • 7 stories
  • 134 comments
  • 35 upvotes
  • Posted to Running an agency, May 08, 2018

    Great read. I agree with almost every point you raised.

    Some things that I would add to the list: - On-boarding process (put a on-boarding process in place for new employees) - Never offer discounts in your first offer - Don't do free work - Always get a signed contract before you do anything!

    0 points
  • Posted to Adobe Illustrator vs XD for animation-heavy project (After Effects/Bodymovin'/Lottie), Apr 29, 2018

    I'm quite a fan of XD but never used the set-up you propose. I mainly use XD to create a high-fidelity prototype and animations and such aren't added until production.

    How is Lottie/Bodymovin these days? I remember trying it last year but finding it a bit cumbersome. Some AE functions are supported. others aren't so it got kinda complicated to figure out what would work. Compared to say a GSAP or AnimeJS solution the bar to get started was also fairly high. You need to be both an expert in AI, AE as well as in the basic concepts of SVG animation.

    0 points
  • Posted to How do I tell a client that this logo looks like..., in reply to Tyson Kingsbury , Apr 13, 2018

    thanks for the advice. Good to hear you're not seeing what I'm seeing directly. At the office we're about 50/50 on this. Which I think is a bit too risky.

    0 points
  • Posted to Work without a contract? How does that work?, in reply to Sjors Timmer , Apr 13, 2018

    The risk with this is that some clients will mess it up even with a good design. It's not worth the risk in most cases I think. I remember cases when we worked our asses off including holidays to build something amazing. Only to watch our client botch up every marketing effort.

    It ultimately depends on how much risk you want to take on.

    Furthermore working without a contract also allows your client to walk away at any given time with everything you've created. They could walk a day before delivery even if you've already given them 99% of your work and not pay a single dime.

    1 point
  • Posted to Work without a contract? How does that work?, Apr 13, 2018

    You can only do this if you a wide variety of references and with certain clients. If you give a speech to say a big banking firm and ask them: "What was this worth to you?" after you've visited their competitor. They will cough up a huge sum not to look cheap.

    If you tell the local restaurant: "How much are you willing to pay?" they will say $1 for the effort.

    I tried this once with a pitch because we had spend a lot of unpaid time preparing an excellent concept. They asked us for a quote on our concept and the full project. I told them, if you pick us for the full project, the concept comes free. If you don't want to go ahead with us, you can decide the price of the concept based on what you think it is worth. They didn't understand this at all, were offended that we would ask money for 'just' a concept while still in negotiation. When things settled down I explained to them that really any price would've been OK. They could have brought some beers to our office to make our designers feel appreciated for their work. Alas, in the end we got 0.

    So unless you are famous or in high-demand at top companies I wouldn't risk it. I would pursue value based pricing instead. I've been implementing that and it works like a charm and beats charging by the hour any day of the week.

    6 points
  • Posted to Button's shouldn't have a hand cursor (part 2), Apr 13, 2018

    It would be a nice A/B test I think and I can already guess the outcome. Another visual cue makes people more likely to click. Especially in the era of flat design when a 'button' is often just a rectangle with a color. cursor:pointer also covers for designers that forget to implement clear hover states.

    0 points
  • Posted to Scroll to the future: everything you always wanted to know about implementing scrolling but were afraid to ask, Apr 12, 2018

    Great stuff, thanks for sharing. Was just looking for a way to fix some rubber banding issues on iOS

    0 points
  • Posted to In Web Design, Everything Hard Can Be Easy Again, in reply to Sacha Greif , Mar 30, 2018

    Experience matters but in different ways than most other professions. I think that if you learn the right problem solving skills it doesn't matter if you build a website in Divi, Webflow, Dreamweaver or code everything by yourself. It will be a good website regardless of the tools you use.

    However, you need to spend some time to actually learn the tools and the process and improve your skills. Most of the sense of 'overwhelming' comes from folks who think that they can just learn how to build a website in 2 hours or turn their Sketch design into a perfectly implemented website within a day.

    It takes time and people seem less and less willing to spend time to learn and/or build things. About 5 years ago when I started doing this professionally I spend hours and days debugging for Internet Explorer 8. Something that seems to have disappeared completely (thank god). As a front-end dev I think things have gotten way easier.

    I also think at times we get too caught up in the process and tools and don't think enough about the end result. I mean, stuff like Sass or Less is not necessary and a static HTML page has little use for React or Vue. Just because the tools are there doesn't mean you need to use them.

    1 point
  • Posted to How do you plan and organize copy/content for new projects?, Mar 28, 2018

    These challenges are most common when an experienced copywriter isn't doing all the content: - Clients never have enough copy but they know everything they do inside and out. - They don't have a clue how to structure their site.

    Over the years I've implemented the following process: 1. We figure out the main goal of every page in the sitemap (what should the user do here, why does it exist?)

    1. We build a rough 'framework' of elements that we think are needed for this page. (like an overview page can look like this, while a case study page should have these elements)

    2. We put in the content that the client has delivered for every page (which is never enough) to see what's missing (for example testimonials)

    3. We curate the delivered content(based on SEO and tone of voice) and add missing content where we can (microcopy / CTA's)

    4. We sit together with the client to make the final tweaks to the content so it's both SEO friendly but also factually correct

    You have to find some way to work on the content together with your client because you can't possibly know your way around every topic and business. Most of them also can't imagine what the content on the web will look like without having seen a page design first.

    2 points
  • Posted to An in-depth look into how Mollie’s Dashboard navigation was designed., Mar 15, 2018

    Very sleek guys. Mollie is the best :)

    1 point
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