What is Project Management?

Project Manager

We constantly get asked all the time ‘What does a Project Manager do’? ‘What is it doing in your breakdown of costs on our quote’?

As a design professional I meet a lot of people that have no idea what a project manager does, and how important they are in delivering a quality product, with no hassles.

It’s a tough question to answer. Especially because in many design firms the project manager is still an emerging position.

Project managers are responsible for the leadership of the project from start to finish. They lead a team and help negotiate relationships within the project—whether it’s with clients, team members, printers, photographers, etc.

Project managers are not the people chasing work and developing new relationships. Instead, they maintain a healthy client relationship throughout the course of the project. This often can turn into a long-term business relationship.

Once the contract is agreed upon and signed, the team is then assembled. Most projects start with a team meeting, that may differ depending on the goals and scope of the work. It is up to the project manager to decide what the best approach to the work should be. Sometimes project managers tend to forget their role is to lead, not dictate, they need to have a vision and an approach, as well as have a clear understanding of the goal.

For us at DesignLab, “It’s all about the relationships.” In a collaborative project setting, successful relationships between team members are essential, and the job of keeping the foundation often falls to the project manager. Conflicts can be an important part of the creative process, but it’s really important that it doesn’t sidestep the project.

One way is to make sure that every team member feels valued, and that they are an important part of the project. This can include making sure that team members are coached effectively, and praised, especially during the challenging stages. It is the project manager’s job to care about the quality of work, and that is the same about the quality of the working environment. Maintaining a positive working environment builds good rapport between the team, and keeps enthusiasm levels on a high.

For the hands-on graphic designer, the profession and work consists of big ideas and the small details. It’s not just enough to have a great concept these days — you have to be able to execute it, and this often means working through painstaking precise and multiple iterations of a concept until you get it right.

It’s the project manager who has to keep an eye on the goals & objectives of the project, both for the client and the design team. Clients can be just as easily fooled by sexy layouts, but it’s the project manager’s job to avoid those temptations and make sure the project meets its objectives.

Although design agencies can benefit from a project manager, they are not always required, especially if an agency has many experienced design professionals. Project managers usually are best in mid-sized to larger agencies with at least 20 staff or more.

In smaller design agencies, an art director or design director often functions as the project manager, and may be capable of handling the role. But sometimes project management is the last thing an art director wants to — or should — be doing. This is where a project manager can relieve the pressure of the art director of these responsibilities so that they can focus on the quality of the design rather than the project process.

Hiring a project manager will not solve all of your agencies issues. But allowing for leadership of your projects, and your agencies work will enable smoother outcomes, and a better workflow, and maybe even encourage leadership within your agency.

Finding the right team, giving correct direction and managing the working environment — while focusing on a strategic direction and staying on top of deadlines and deliverables — are all part of a project manager’s role. It’s a challenging task. But if you can find someone who is good at it, you can build your business and improve the quality of your portfolio.

Social Media Trends to Make Your Brand Stand out in 2016

Are you looking to get tremendous results for your brand through social media this year?

Social media trends 2016

Social media is ever evolving as one of the biggest components for generating business sales and leads. It means that you need to come up with some plans that can stand you out from your competition.

Here is some tips.

Streaming Live Video Plays a Key Role

Video Streaming

Brands need to utilise live video streaming as a prominent option to connect with their customers and attract more customers.

Don’t get too concerned about knowledge because Periscope and Meerkat are apps that will let you do it easily.

Something to consider, consumers always trust a brand that has taken care about their customers and make every possible effort to fulfill their desires. We believe that streaming live video will bring you one stop closer to your targeted audience.

You can also use this option to share stories of your brand.

A Brand that Targets on Real-Time Engagement is Already Ahead

iPhone Engagement

When it comes to social media, consistency plays a major role, especially when people are spending 30% their time on social media.

Because this is a massive competition, if you are not listening to your chances properly, you will not be able to accomplish your targets.

So, keep your audience involved through constant interaction.

Have you ever thought that why giant brands like Coca-Cola or Starbucks are so successful on social media?

It’s simple. These brands are always active on social channels, and engage their audiences through a range of techniques. Such types of brands also respond quite efficiently which is yet another prominent reason behind their success.

So if you are expecting outstanding results from your social media, then get more focused towards real-time engagement.

 Collect Analysis for Decision Making

Data Analysis

Gone are the days when business decisions have been made on a ideal situation. Now with the fast advancement in technology, everything has changed.

If you want to create a social media strategy you have to gather facts and data to make a mature decision.

If you haven’t been collecting data analysis then it’s time for you to take it into consideration.

You don’t need to make any effort because there are plenty of data analysis tools available online.  We use Moz Analytics and SproutSocial.

 

Brands Should Focus More on Visual Content

Visual Content

Content (in text form) will no longer be enough to attract your customers. You really have to include video for making your content stand out more.

It’s a fact that social media platforms gets updated after every second with unlimited number of posts. So sometimes, it’s not possible for your’e user to read everything they come across.

Most of the times they will only consider reading a post that looks more appealing, and this is where video comes in.

It’s obvious that if you want to boost the visibility of your posts, make your content as appealing as possible through quality visuals.

Check out the following brands, they their audiences will get satisfied through visual content. Kate Spade New York and tHe Horse Footwear.

 

Customers Are Becoming You’re Ambassador

Customer is the ambassador

Satisfying your’e customer to make them your ambassador of your product is more important these days.

A potential customer usually conducts a research now before making their final decision. For this, they will ask other people about their experiences about your brand.

If you have already established a good relationship with your existing customers, they will certainly tell all their friends about it.

So, it is vital for you to satisfy your existing customers, so that they can become the real ambassadors of your brand.

New Publication Options Will Provide More Opportunities for Brands

Opportunities for Brands

Did you know Facebook has started to roll out a new Instant Article feature. We personally think this feature will be an amazing option for any brands, marketers and publishers and to convey their messages.

We live in such an informative age, which means it has become crucial for any brands to now educate their audience. Instant Article will be an appropriate feature for one of these purposes.

If you are targeting a more mature audience, then try LinkedIn’s new pulse features.

In summary, you now don’t need to miss any opportunity to win your audience, these publication features are quite useful tools that will keep you connected with your audience.

 

Smart phones Need to be Given Topmost Priority For Marketing

Smart Phone Stats

Browsing on your smart phone is becoming more and more the common way to be on the internet.

Do you know that the number of mobile-only internet users now exceeds desktop-only users?

If you are not using your smart phones correctly, then now is the time to think of it as the most powerful element for building up a social media marketing strategy for your brand.

It the sensible move because the majority of people now use smart phones to spend time using social media.

Because of this you will have to use appropriate size of images that look amazing on a smart phone. You may also have to re-structure your social content strategy accordingly to gain better results.

In Summary

Social media is emerging as one of the most appropriate platform for all types of brands. It is an ever-changing industry that requires you to be updated about the latest trends.