Career Solutions, Inc. is actually an expansion from the original “Foundations of Brilliance” program created by Bernard Percy. This new company is co-founded by Bernard Percy (Writer, Educator, Author, International Speaker and Consultant) and Ben Kugler (Writer, Executive, Relationship Expert), and offers additional services. While they’ve been quite successful and have helped thousands all over the world accomplish their career goals, their website still looked like Bernard’s first WordPress blog from the 90s. It definitely didn’t reflect the care and professionalism of what these two deliver to their clients. Additionally, their brand was confusing. The site had no logo. The title on the website was a different name than the actual URL (domain name). The site was not responsive, and so didn’t look or function properly on smaller devices.
Career Solutions, Inc. offers Career Consulting and Coaching Services for people of any age and work situation who need help getting to the next step in their career. We help you develop the right foundation on which to build your future career. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks about your pursuits. What matters is what YOU think and what will create YOUR happiness. And we will work with you until you achieve it.
STRENGTHS: The original program, just called “Foundations of Brilliance” already had a ton of happy customers and success stories from people of all ages all over the world who have been able to accomplish their career goals after using this service. We needed to create a website which incorporated all the services they offer in a way that better represented their awesomeness.
WEAKNESSES: No brand to speak of. A very outdated website. Confusion between the URL, the title of the website, the info on their business cards. Overall a poor execution of “putting your best foot forward.”
OPPORTUNITIES: Our research showed that according to Gallup, 85% of Americans are unhappy with their job. People of all ages run into difficulties with this. High School kids rarely know what they want to do, despite the world expecting them to know. That’s a problem. Adults wind up in jobs just to make money but don’t make them happy. People retire and want to do something different with their lives. Americans spend most of their life doing work. So there’s really nothing BUT opportunity for Career Solutions. Our job is just to make sure it’s obvious that this help is available, in an aesthetic and functional way.
THREATS: While Career Solutions is quite unique in their approach, career consulting is a VERY crowded space. There are a lot of adjacent Career industry sites with known industry certification logos on their sites to legitimize their services like NCDA (National Career Development Association). But what CSI does isn’t that. It isn’t like the kind of career guidance that these more established organizations offer. And yet it’s 100% guaranteed to be effective. So the focus just has to be on the successes and testimonials of those whose lives were forever changed and improved, and why it’s actually BETTER that they’re different.
There was nothing aligning the brand elements to each other. The earlier Foundations of Brilliance site didn’t even have a logo. The site colors were a seemingly random combination of light blue, gold, gray, yellow, white and black. Career Solutions, Inc. did have a logo, but it used a dated metallic gradient treatment. So we kept the logo and just flattened the color so it was more current.
The Career Solutions, Inc. brand needed trustworthy and professional-looking colors, fonts, images, graphic elements. When you read the success stories you see that what this program actually does is help people discover their purpose when they don’t know what it is. That knowledge gives them life and direction and motivation and enthusiasm. So that renewed “aliveness” needed to be communicated design-wise. We used a bright, rich and intense color palette, gradients, and animated hover effects, to create the life we wanted the website to convey.
All images and graphic elements had to follow the above goal of communicating professionalism and renewed aliveness.
And of course we created a brand guide to ensure that the brand stays consistent in all future marketing and across all platforms.
The Brand Styles Poster
After the brand had a defined direction, a few things still had to be solved:
1. Arrangement for User Experience
Specifically, how to organize all the content they had in such a way as to be easy to read and navigate, while also really explaining who Ben and Bernard are and what they can offer…all without clicking and scrolling endlessly, as was necessary on the earlier website. And of course, it all had to be beautiful.
A new clean and bright home page with an easy to read menu, contact form, an image that communicates the right message, and nothing distracting.
See the whole page here.
2. Identifying the Publics
Career Solutions has three distinct publics (a public is a group of people that have specific qualities in common which we segment for marketing). And these three publics needed to be easily seen and understood by a website visitor. This allows a person to identify immediately with the website and its services. Or not, if it doesn’t apply to him/her. The solution we created had to accomplish this immediately; visually and structurally. Getting someone quickly from point A (the home page) to point B (the information that applies to them) to point C (getting them to reach out or fill out the free assessment form) is the most senior function.
A row showing the various publics, right on the homepage. With animated hover effects, of course.
3. Too Many Steps
Finally, a major functionality problem was the Career Assessment form. On the old website, a visitor would have to submit their email to request the form. Then the form would be emailed to the user and they would email it back. That’s just too many steps in our current instant-gratification world. We have to make it as easy as possible for an interested person to get the products or services they came for – or didn’t know they wanted until they saw it.
We solved this by just creating the form right on the site. And adding a bright button in the main navigation to make it very easy to find it from every single page.
Now Career Solutions, Inc. has a brand new website with a fresh, powerful look which functions perfectly on all browsers and devices of all sizes. They have an online presence that showcases them in a professional light and highlights the many wins and successes of those whose lives have been changed by their services. And offering hope and solutions to those who may not even think those successes are possible.
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