I was so impressed with Deb’s process.

Carrie McChesney Owner, Concept Green

The Situation

My website made me feel like I was walking around with my zipper down. It was cheesy, and didn’t reflect my business. “Whoops, my fly is open, and I just showed 1,000 people.” That’s how I felt. It really bothered me.

At first, I wanted to redesign the site myself. But a year went by, and nothing happened. I’d been a technical writer for 12 years, but writing for my own website was so much more challenging. I was too close to it. I needed to bring in somebody with an outside business perspective.

Why Cococello?

I was really impressed with Deb’s process—especially her client intake form.

She asked the kinds of questions I ask my own clients. 'Do you have authority to do this project?' and 'Who's going to sign off on the copy?

My first impression? Here is a savvy business owner who knows all the ways project management can go awry. She’s asking good questions, she’s organized, and she’s going to effectively manage this project.

I was also attracted to her background in print design and to her graphic sensibilities.

“Deb nailed the design; just nailed it.”

The Solution

First, Deb had me put together a mood board, which forced me to start thinking about the colors and what I wanted to convey. She had me thinking, “If the site was a person, what would her personality be?”

Personifying the site was really helpful.

It helped me clarify the goals for the site, which also included search engine optimization, user-friendliness, and content strategy.

Deb had me look at competitors’ sites. Some of the sites were austere and intimidating. To communicate the mood of my company, I told Deb I wanted a balance of humor and seriousness.

In the end, Deb made my site crisp, clear, and approachable. We accomplished all of our goals, and Deb nailed the design. Just nailed it. What Deb put together was a breath of fresh air. We didn’t have to make any revisions.

Now I feel like the zipper’s back up, I am put together, and I can go out. Because of the new site, I’ve already gotten a call from multi-national retail clothing company. Their rep said, “Hey, we saw your site. We’d like to talk to you about your services.”

“Deb is like a counselor. Sometimes I’d call her up and say, ‘Deb, I’m sorry. I’m stuck.’ I’d be in a panic attack, and she’d calm me down and say, ‘Ok, let’s break it down. Let’s try this, and this, and this.’”

The Approach

I was so impressed with Deb’s process.

We had regular check-ins about the project, and she created an on-line workspace where we discussed the project in conversation threads and shared documents.

Throughout the process, she had me review and approve each step.

In every conversation we had, she would move the project forward. Even if it was just a baby step, we were always moving forward.

Deb is like a counselor. Sometimes I’d call her up and say, "Deb, I'm sorry. I'm stuck.” I’d be in a panic attack, and she’d calm me down and say. “Ok, let’s break it down. Let’s try this, and this, and this.”

I’m now using that tactic with my own clients. ‘Don’t get bogged down. Don’t let fear block you. Move it forward every step of the way.’

Advice for Someone Like Me

If you want to be taken seriously, your website needs to have an identity. Now, thanks to Deb, I have that. I also like Deb personally. Every time we speak, she brings this really positive outlook. She laughs a lot. She‘s just a pleasure to work with. I know it sounds trite to say someone is a pleasure to work with, but she really is. I enjoyed working with her.