For today’s blog post, I thought I’d share a story with you. This one, like most stories, comes with a lesson for you about building and growing your web platform or mobile app.
The story begins about ten month ago, when a young (ahem) lady decided to go out on her own and start a new business. Even though a lot of people are shunning business cards these days, this lady decided that they were still worthwhile for handing out at networking events (and to give to family and friends!) So, to start, a logo and branding needed to be created.
As most marketers will tell you, to create your brand, you need to understand a bit about who you are, what you want to do, what you stand for, who you plan to sell to, etc. All of these go to influence some important visual elements of your brand – the name of your business or product, the colours you use and the fonts that you pick.
A logo – basically consists of some colours, and maybe an image and some text. Some might even have a picture. Seemingly a simple thing – but it says so much about your business, which is why it’s so important. You want people to say nice things about you!
There are lots of graphic designers out there who can help you come up with a brand and logo. However, if you’re even slightly creative or have a limited budget (like I did), then head to Canva where they have a category called “Logo” to get you started. Canva basically allows to design and create visual things - think business cards, posters, presentations, social media images, product labels, etc.
People can spend ages coming up with a brand and logo. Lucky for me, it was fairly straight-forward. A flick through the available logo templates in Canva, some tweaking of colours, a change of font and voila, I had the start of a logo. I showed it to some trusted advisors (a.k.a. my artistic friends), updated a couple of things and I was done!
What made it easy for me was that I knew I wanted a circle of some sort in my logo.
“So why did you I want a circle in my logo?”, you might ask!
Well, I wanted to reflect the circular nature of the software and product development processes. Most people think that you start with an idea for a web platform or mobile app, build it, launch it and then you’re done. In reality, the development never stops – which is why we call both software and product development - “lifecycles” (For more info on these processes, check out this article).
Once you’ve launched your app, you find yourself in a constant cycle of updates. Some you have to do (e.g. operating system upgrades for mobile phones, new legislation, etc.) and some will be driven from your customers, and your business strategy and processes. If you’ve already spent a ton of money building your app and the thought of spending even more money on development makes you cringe, I'm sorry to tell you that you might have to revisit your numbers to fit this in. However, for the most part, these changes are actually a good thing – and it’s what makes software and product development pretty exciting.
There’s a good bet that when you launched your product, the product that you ended up with is at least a little bit different from your original idea. You’ve learned a lot along the way and now it’s time to take your product to the next level! The cyclical approach to development ensures that you can continue to improve and grow your product. Pick the right changes to make, and your product will help you to achieve your goals.
The circle in the GPC logo is not a solid one.
Did you know that there are a lot of different ways that you can draw a circle? Canva certainly has a few! So, how did I end up with this one?
Did you know that research suggests that only 16.2% of software development projects finish on-time, on-budget and with the features and functionality requested? (Chaos Report, The Standish Group, 2014) What an appalling stat!
Despite the number of apps and web platforms that get created every year, software development is not a perfect science. There are so many places where things can go wrong – not defining your product well enough, picking the wrong things to build, hiring the wrong developers, testing the wrong things, not testing enough, testing too much… the list is endless. With so many potential points of failure, it’s definitely a tricky road to navigate.
So, based on all of this, I wanted the GPC circle to reflect the imperfect nature of this process. It’s also why one of my main goals is to help my clients successfully complete their development projects.
And that’s my story…
The GPC logo was built to be simple, but meaningful. I hope that my little story gives you some insight into building and growing your platform or app.
The next time you see the GPC logo, think about how you’re going to prepare for the cyclical nature of developing your product, and how you can address some of the potential pitfalls along the way so that you can have successful development projects.
If you want to discuss how you’re going to navigate the road to building and growing your app, sign up for a free 30-minute discovery session* to make sure you’re on the right track.