Designed For Mobile

Storytelling

Those who tell the stories rule the world.  

-Hopi Native American proverb

Even back in smaller populations and tribes there were influencers who knew how to reach people’s emotions. As emotional beings, humans are easily influenced by masters of the art of storytelling. Storytellers know how to evoke emotions in people. they know how to get a response. Storytellers thrive on building a following and having their audience beg for more.

Star Wars is an excellent example of this in Return of the Jedi when C-3PO tells the Ewoks how they came to land on the forest moon of Endor. The Ewoks are completely emotionally engaged with 3PO’s incredible storytelling skills. No doubt this is the type of engagement you’re after. In order to find out how to get this engagement we need to go to where people are gathering.

The Digital Campfire

We no longer gather around campfires but we do interact with people quite differently. Storytelling has become so important that we are checking our smartphones 85 times per day (Nottingham Trent University). The modern campfire is the smartphone. It’s clear to see why designing for mobile is so important but it doesn’t stop with there.

  • 25% of US mobile web users only access the web from their mobile phones (On Device Research, as reported by MobiThinking)

It’s clear that all websites should be focused around a mobile experience.

Mobile First Design

Designing for mobile is actually easier than it sounds. Tools like Safari’s “Responsive Design Mode” allow you to check your design from popular mobile screen sizes. It also allows resizing of the screen to any screen size you’d like to check. There are various web browser options and resolution sizes (1x, 2x, 3x) that can be set.

Responsive Design Mode

Safari’s Responsive Design Mode makes it easy to design for mobile first

If you click a second time on the device selection (ex. iPhone 6s Plus) it will show the landscape view.

Design Elements

T’here are certain design elements that are native to mobile. The best way to design for mobile first is to implement these elements.

Here are a few essentials:

  1. Hamburger Menu – “mouseover” and “dropdown” actions don’t work on smartphones very smoothly. Use nested categories and subcategories instead.
  2. Icons – minimal screen space means less room for text. Icons are familiar and can replace or emphasise better than text.
  3. Touch elements (gestures, swipes) – image sliders, etc. work with swipes, remove arrows and dots that are too small for thumbs…

A great practice is to use a native smartphone app for a few minutes and observe every gesture you make. Where do you tap? Where do you swipe? Which elements are actionable? When you see certain elements what do they mean to you?

Tell Your Story

If we look at who’s telling the stories these days, it’s easy to find who is ruling the world.

1.13 billion people log onto Facebook daily (Facebook)

Your audience already has a habit of consuming stories. These stories are being told visually. The average video generates 135% greater organic reach, when compared to photos (Social Bakers). Videos are best for Facebook but that means photos have now become standard. Your brand and website need to be using photos to tell your audience who you are and what you’re about.

Chances are, your story is changing on a daily basis. Facebook is a great place tell your story on a daily basis, but what about your website? Gone are the days of a static website that doesn’t change or evolve with time. Your pictures should be changing. Your blog should be fresh. You should be updating your site with new material as your story lives on. Not because Google will favour you, but because your brand needs to stay relevant. Your story needs be told.

Building an Audience

Once you have a story, you’ll soon discover that there’s no one around your campfire. We go into this more in depth with Spotlight.  The important thing is now you have something to show once you do get traffic. What’s worse than not having traffic is having hundreds of visitors with a high bounce rate (people come to your site and leave immediately).

There are multiple ways to build an audience:

  1. Email marketing
  2. Social Media
  3. Organic SEO/SEM
  4. Paid Ads & PPC
  5. Content Marketing
  6. Lead Generation

Conclusion

tl;dr

  • All of your audience, clients, customers, etc. are on smartphones
  • Design your site for mobile first – #designedformobile
  • Your website’s first priority is to tell your story
  • This should be done using images, video and native smartphone elements
  • Once you have a decent story told – invite the masses (we’ll show you how)

Let Us Tell Your Story

We are experienced storytellers, film producers, mobile developers and designers. Relax, focus on what you do best and we’ll turn your story into something amazing!

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