Sticky Subjects

Please take a few moments to read the following helpful "sticky subjects" we have seen come up in projects over the years. Our thoughts on these are less "contractual" and more "guidelines" - but we adhere to them in order nonetheless in order to make the engagement as productive as possible, and we ask every client to do the same. 

On Timing...

Because we are an outcome based strategy firm, we pride ourselves in delivering all projects as close to deadline schedules as possible - usually within 5 days or so. We have a built a design system that works well toward this goal.

What does this mean?

  • In order to avoid endless rounds of time consuming and unnecessary revisions, we strongly enforce our maximum three rounds of revisions on one concept that are included in any identity projects.
  • You will have no more than 5 business days to submit your feedback on any round of revision. If you have not submitted feedback by the 5 days, we consider the round approved and will move forward to next milestone.
  • We both have a duty to meet deadlines that we set together.
  • Extra rounds of requested revisions are $500 each and will add 5 business days (one week) to your project timeline. 
  • Occasionally unavoidable personal matters or family emergencies etc will come up on both ends, and this is normal "life happens" type stuff and we will all pivot and adjust together as needed.

The sooner we launch your project, the sooner you can begin having real world outcomes (and income!) from it. Even though we want you to feel a sense of pride after the project, design is not rocket surgery. It's a means to an end. Don't get too caught up in the "ego" or "preciousness" of it. Having said that, we will never steer you wrong and will ask all the right questions to make sure we end up in the right destination.

On Project Scope...

Have you ever heard of project or scope "creep?" It's a funny industry term that describes a scenario where the client keeps incrementally adding work and layers to a project AFTER the scope has been determined and signed off on (usually in writing).

The problem with scope creep is that unless it is nipped in the bud swiftly on sight, it will cause the project to balloon out of control very quickly. And of course the problem here is that the longer the project takes, the longer the return on your investment. Our skin literally begins to crawl if a project scope starts to creep...because we know that it will end in an unprofessional engagement for everyone involved. So we avoid it all costs, and think you should too.

We have a system that is clear, that is in writing and that so far (knock on IKEA wood) also works.

Every client is given a one to two page Project Scope checklist at the onset of the project. In it will list every item that is included in your project. We have a system of design that ensures a very timely delivery. Depending on the level of engagement, there will be varying degrees of work required from the client to get it all ready for our design, copy & system teams. If any content is added AFTER the deadlines, or if any requested work falls out of the original Project Scope checklist, there may be additional time & costs. A quote will always be given first.

On Outcomes...

And scope creep leads us to the very important question: Who is this project for anyway? If you answered "ME!" You would be wrong.

Design work serves your client and your goals. Period. It does you no good to choose a dazzling identity with 25 tedious rounds of revisions that your client won't respond to, or that won't meet your goals.

It's easy to lose sight of that - especially as artists & creative entrepreneurs.

So remember this when you are tempted to perpetually "tweak" the design. We are hired, and not the cheapest option in town, in order to give our outcome oriented, expert design with your client and goals in mind. If you request extra rounds of revisions, there may be extra timing and costs added to the project scope (always with a quote is given first).

On Specialty Items...

The fixed cost quoted to you does not include gold leaf, foiling, or letterpress treatments. These are quite labor intensive from both a design & production standpoint and will require a custom quote with additional time and costs. 

How does this help you?

We have found that clients wanting specialty treatments enter the project with a clear vision and standards. In order to guarantee the quality of the final product it requires many extra steps that standard identity projects do not. You have standards, and the custom quote allows them to be met so you are happy with final outcome.

On Communication...

You are our very valued client and once a project begins we have a communication system that works well to move the project forward.

We check project client emails once a week on Tuesday mornings and respond at that time. You may email us throughout the week, but please know you will only receive one reply to all questions on Tuesdays. Instead of emailing, we recommend that you write down any questions in an Evernote folder (if you don't already use it, we think you will love it!) that come up in a given week during the project and save them either for a meeting, or make a note to look through all your questions on Monday evenings and edit/compile as necessary. 

How does this help you?

We want all of us to spending our time on tasks that ensure the desired outcome. If either of us have to spend a lot of time writing and answering questions, that is taking us away from the hard work of business building. Not to mention that we both would have to hire extra staff and overtime/overhead to keep up with it all.

Questions are fine, but we have found that many, many times you will have already answered your own question by the time our weekly email or meeting comes up. We are saving us all a bunch of time with this policy.

Relax and enjoy the process! Don't get caught up in the minutiae of it all - that is our job. You have hired type A "get it done right" people so that you don't have to worry about every little detail.

On Exceptions...

Design and branding is less science than art and usually requires some jiggering along the way. Also known as: things come up in a project, and it's all going to be ok.

We are all human. If something doesn't come out quite right or is missed, we will work, sometimes past a deadline, until it is right.

However, once the engagement is over and you have "signed off" on the engagement or product in our offboarding process, please note that any further tweaks you may want will most likely be subject to our handy Pit Stop monthly subscription. 


On Money...

Our favorite design thinker, Blair Enns, has wonderful insight on when to talk about money and when not to. And in a business setting, when a client is paying an expert or professional for a defined service - it's 100% appropriate and indeed essential that money be discussed first, often, and as needed. Generally our services start around $8500 on up to $35,000. We are not for everyone.

  • Our engagements require 50% down to begin, and 50% due on the day the website is handed over to your account (not the launch date - the website delivery date).
  • There is a 5% discount for paying your entire Design or Launch project fee up front (minus the $1500 RoadMapping).
  • Almost every client does our invaluable $1500 RoadMapping Session.
  • 100% of the $1500 RoadMapping fee is rolled into any work over $3500 we start for you within 6 months.
  • You may have a full refund within 14 days of any engagement. No questions asked. After 14 days, there is zero refund.
  • Once a project is signed off by you the client, no additional tweaks or work of any kind is implied at no charge by 16 Hoops. But as a client, you have access to our (ridiculously affordable) Pit Stop monthly service.