Yes, I am a Web Designer

(The Insider Story)

WordPress came third.  When I started learning web design twelve years ago it was really a combination of Adobe Contribute (CMS) and some super stylish MySpace that gave me my start.  I will admit to one ill considered foray into (don’t try this) using Microsoft Word to build a website, for which I was paid $300.00 probably for the sheer miracle that it actually worked. I spent the next five years hand coding HTML and Stylesheets.  WordPress was beneath me at the time.  Sometime around 2012 the cost benefit of WordPress finally outstriped the pride factor of hundreds of hours of hand coding.  Not a fool, I had began studying WordPress development and design several years earlier and by 2014 WP is boss universal.

The part that gets lost in all of this is how I’ve put my comprehensive professional career into helping people build businesses and communicate about their passions in ways that code and content management systems will never accomplish alone.  Yes, I am a card carrying member of the International Web Geeks Association.  I am also a business consultant, business owner, business manager and I have worked in marketing and brand development since 2006.  I have found that 7 out of 10 clients that come to me needing a website don’t have a business plan and struggle to communicate their business effectively regardless of the media or circumstance.  So often they launch into their passions head long and planning is a very complicated to do list in their heads and on scraps of paper they can’t quite find at the moment.  They are working sixty, seventy and eighty hours a week juggling dozens of priorities and yeah, they absolutely do need a website.

Artist, Web Designer, Business ConsultantGranted, this is not the case with every business, nor every client I have or do work with.  Sometimes they have a business plan, a solid shop and a couple of hardworking employees.  They have a somewhat scary looking logo and a website that ranks first on page 72 for their only important keyword.  They sell dog food and they have 9 months worth of posts of Grumpy Cat on the Facebook and Instagram accounts.  “But we’re reaching out!”

I learned a long time ago about the Web Designer who has this friend the Business Planner and the Business Planner has this friend the Brand Developer and this Brand Developer who has this friend the Marketing Guru.  To the tune tens of thousands of dollars of disconnected, disjointed efforts later the client with a passion and a pretty good idea for a business is broke and can’t understand why.  I have friends who do all of these jobs, and sometimes we do work together, but the purpose is not to run around a client and my background affords me the opportunity help clients look at their comprehensive business and marketing plans, sketch them out if necessary, and stop putting carts before horses.  At that point we get a clearer picture of why a website is necessary, what very specifically to do with it and what additional support is needed, be it social media, print advertising or something crazy like business cards.

If I had my deepest wishes come true I would would be a world famous fiction writer, subtly commenting on the nature of life and state of the world, vicariously, through fictional characters as scapegoats.  Until then, I have the opportunity to help people build businesses and communicate with their world.  My purpose is to support those who are brave enough to pursue their passions get their chance to be successful.

I do select projects carefully.  It would be a disservice for me to take a project I do not believe will lend to success and only cost money.  And of course, there is a client for every designer and a designer for every client but not every client is for every designer.  If you are interested in discussing a project with me please contact me by web form or call by Google Voice number and I will respond promptly.