UX/UI really matters, so does your Founder branding, and how to hack your way to action
Founder’s Momentum #2
Happy Monday! 👋
Welcome to The Complete Founder, where I share my learnings to teach you how to build your product, grow your audience, and keep your sanity.
This is the weekly issue of Founder’s Momentum 🚀*, where I send you 3 short ideas on each of those three topics.*
Every other Friday I will send Founder’s Focus 🎯*, a deep dive article with practical advice to tackle the many problems you will face in your founder journey.*
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Today we discuss:
Why you can’t cut corners around UX/UI, but how to effectively tackle it.
The imperative need for Founders to build a personal brand.
The practice of consistent imperfection. Your hack to start taking action.
1. UX/UI design really matters, but do NOT reinvent the wheel
When you’re in the early stages of building your product you have to hyper optimize your efforts and be as resourceful as possible.
However, there are certain areas where you can’t cut corners.
One of them is UX/UI design.
Humans are creatures of habit. We are drawn to what we know.
And for better or worse, the world is now used to a certain level of design excellence.
Most people have access to a smartphone designed by companies that have spent millions of dollars understanding the way humans interact with digital products, what’s appealing to the human eye, and how to keep us engaged and wanting more.
The bar is high and users won’t put up with mediocre user experiences that don’t adhere to the current design standard. It creates friction and makes it harder for them to succeed in their use of your product.
Reducing friction should be your number one priority.
You have to make it as easy as possible for any user to have a seamless experience as they figure out how your product solves their problem.
Now, don’t get discouraged.
Chances are you don’t have a couple of millions to do your own small scale user research.
The thing is, you don’t have to.
There’s no need to reinvent the wheel.
You just need to stick to what’s already working.
Precisely because there are other massive companies spending millions doing that user research, you just need to find out which one is closer to your needs, study their user interfaces, and tweak them to your particular use-case.
This is something that even the big players do.
The 2 biggest pioneers in advertising technology were Google and Meta (Facebook at the time).
Facebook was the first maximizing the possibilities of social media advertising, and it became the number one destination for brands wanting to promote their products. As Twitter, Pinterest, or Snapchat started developing their own Ad Managers, they basically copied Facebook’s interfaces and adapted it to their own needs.
As Facebook kept innovating and adding features and changes, the rest of them followed suit.
When it comes to your product you should never start from a blank canvas.
Most likely your innovation does not reside in how your users pays, logs in, or creates a new folder. Those are all user flows that have already been hyper optimized by other companies. Do not waste your time trying to create yours from scratch.
Focus only on your differentiators.
The best resources to do this are UI/UX archives; repositories that save and catalog different user flows from a wide variety of web and mobile apps.
Here are some of my favorite ones 👇
2. Founders need a personal brand
Personal branding will soon stop being an option for most.
If you’re a Founder, specially if you’re bootstrapping your Startup; “soon” is now.
As consumers, we are way more irrational than we would like to admit. And choice is not usually objective.
Martin Neumeier, author of The Brand Flip, says that consumers don’t like being sold things, but we love to buy. But we love buying because we want to join tribes. We want to belong. We are looking for connection and meaning in our lives.
People are tired of marketing schemes and huge corporations trying to sell them stuff.
They would much rather buy from people they trust. Specially now that the creator economy is booming and you get to actually meet the people building your favorite products.
The dynamics of commerce are changing quickly. And building a genuine and authentic personal brand will give you a competitor advantage over anybody else.
As a Founder and builder, this is crucial.
Traditional marketing is quickly declining in efficiency and it’s not enough to just throw money at the problem.
And chances are, you will be iterating your product a million times. You might even have to do a 180 degrees pivot.
If you focus your communication on the specifics of your product alone. None of that work will be able to transfer from one project to the next.
However, if you have a following who stands behind the truth of the contributions you’re trying to make to the world. They will become your biggest supporters.
They will have a preference towards you that will be stronger than any price reduction or slight improvement other competitors without a trust-worthy founder can have.
So, what’s your story?
This week’s issue of Founder’s Focus 🎯 will be a deep dive on how you can build your early-stage Founder identity. What questions you need to ask yourself to get clarity on your vision and how to package it all around clear messaging and simple but effective visual branding that will help you stand out and start growing your audience.
Subscribe so you don’t miss it!
3. Consistent imperfection. A small hack to start taking action.
Most people fail to get better at something or even start at all because they only believe the effort is worth it if they end up with a perfect result.
If you doubt you’ll ever get to the finish line, why bother at all?
It's either perfect or nothing.
But that's not how people grow.
That's not how anything grows.
It's the sum of a thousand tiny iterations that compounds into amazing transformations.
That’s how species evolve. And that’s how you will too.
For the past 2 years I’ve been following a mantra I call consistent imperfection.
For anything I want to do or get better at, I try to show up everyday. Do at least one rep. Read at least one page. Write at least one sentence.
It’s better to do something, even if it’s the bare minimum, than to do nothing at all.
When you adopt this mindset. The reality is that once you actually start you end up doing more than just the bare minimum. Doing only a little is not as daunting as doing it all. But once you’re down on the floor doing that single push up, you end up doing a few more.
Some days you’ll actually do it all. Some you will do half. Some just that one tiny little step.
Whatever you achieve.
It will compound. You will grow. You will improve.
And eventually you’ll look back and be surprised at how much you’ve changed. How much you’ve done. And how little by little, what seemed impossible, became reality.
Don’t get paralyzed by perfectionism.
Strive for consistent imperfection.
And that’s it for today.
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