We’re frequently asked, “What do you use for client collaboration in the design phase?”
We love this question. In fact, we hope you ask us even after you read this post!
Because we believe that client involvement creates a better final product and stronger partnerships, we make a big effort to use a variety of collaborative tools in design and beyond. The primary tool we use (the one we’ll focus on in this post) is the wonderfully robust Invision.
Why We Love Invision for Collaboration
We love Invision primarily because it’s efficient for our team and seamless for our clients. A few ways that plays out:
- Slack Integrations: Whenever we share an Invision board or project with our client, we also integrate the shared content with a client-specific channel in Slack. This means that whenever a client makes a comment, our whole team is notified and the right team member is able to respond efficiently.
- Faster Sharing: Using Invision means our clients don’t have to download and distribute cumbersome design files throughout their team. They don’t have to remember or store any logins either. Instead, they can use one link for all team members to comment and review.
- Better Collaboration: Tour points, integrations, and easy link sharing all mean that feedback is gathered more quickly, ideas are distributed more effectively, and our team can iterate more efficiently. In short, collaboration skyrockets!
Before we ever start talking design with a client, we’ll often create a research board. It’s one of our favorite ways to gather ideas and inspiration from all over the internet. We’ll take screenshots of our favorite sites, pages, or design elements and drop them in shared board with links and comments. Once added to the board, any team member can add their own ideas and screenshots as well.
After we comb through a research board and host a few Discovery conversations with our client, our Creative Director will compile all ideas, visuals, and directions down into a cohesive mood board (it’s pretty amazing to watch her do this, actually).
Oftentimes, this is the first design deliverable we share with the client. It showcases different variations of a recommended style and allows the client dialogue with us about what they do and do not like and what does and does not fit their brand. Bonus: This also gives us a shared design language with our clients so everyone has the same definition of terms such as “professional” or “exciting”!
Style Tiles & Wireframes
Based on moodboard feedback, our Creative Director then strategically crafts a Style Tile – a recommended color palette, typography pairing, and sample styling. We’ll pair this with the wireframes (a bit of imagination is required!) and present our functional layouts with tour points. These tour points allow us to walk the client through our design or structural decisions, step-by-step.
Clients can then comment on each tour point, or create their own comment anywhere else on the design, to provide instant feedback.
Next, we move to full designs! Similar to wireframes, we’ll upload each page to Invision and provide a customized tour explaining key decisions or easy-to-miss micro-interactions.
Interested in collaborating with us on your own custom design? We’d love to hear from you. Head on over to our Contact page and let us know what you have in mind.