I have a running argument with my older brother that is nearly ten years old at this point. Since as long as I can remember I have never been someone to fret over much, looking over the biggest parts of my life, exams, awards, meetings, big games etc. I have never really been prone to nerves, I've always approached things in a light-hearted manner. My brother is the complete opposite and over-analyses everything he does to an extreme. He has always told me I need to take things more seriously and that my approach has the potential to rub people the wrong way.
This argument was recently brought to life again thanks to a recent incident with Avalanche. If you have viewed my website or any of our marketing materials (online/offline) you will know that we do things differently and use my childhood influences in my work on the Avalanche website specifically. There is a million and one website designers in the world so I think we really stand out thanks to embracing my individuality.
Things like placing images of Pokemon on our site, each page has a different one which we think works for them. For example, a post about the gym and working out has a Machamp and a page that is incredibly awesome has a Charizard. (side-note, still hope for a Charizard every year for Christmas, fingers crossed for 2015 😉) Pretty easy to follow, right? I recently had a potential client tell me that they really like our style but don't think Avalanche would be suitable for them as we are just too "childish" and not serious enough to attract a high level of clients. Of course, I was tempted to snap back but this would not have achieved anything. I thanked the potential client for their time and was on my way, albeit confused and a little bit angry.
I always pride myself in giving clients what they want and approach every project with their needs in mind and design according to their spec but with our own individual spin on it as much as possible. I decided to sit down and have a look at my stuff & wonder if I should take a more "grown-up" professional approach to the entire process.
Would this give me more market credibility and give Avalanche a more rounded professional look? This conversation with myself lasted all of about 30 seconds when I realised that Avalanche's approach is merely an extension of myself and to change it would be to change myself. I decided I would continue with what has worked for me so far and if a client doesn't like it, then perhaps we just are not a good fit and we should both move our focus elsewhere.
I have always had a singular approach to design and indeed social media marketing as these are what I have found myself doing for a living for quite some time now, while it is a constant learning curve and I mess up a lot, I am also pretty confident that I am good at what I do and we have a lot of wonderful clients who appreciate the work we do. I would advise anyone to stay true to individuality in their work and all aspects of their lives, I think it is the key to making some unique work that will stand the test of time. Be personal, if that means approaching everything with humour then so be it. I will continue to argue with my brother because to quote a great, albeit unstable man, why so serious?