Publications

This is the implementation phase of the Product & UX Strategy. Essentially, this service will build upon the Product & UX Strategy report and transform the recommendations into a digital publication in a PDF format.

Process

Most Editorial Projects start with an “UX Assessment & Strategy,” or a similar strategy phase. The findings from this initial work, usually in the form os "user stories", will guide the design process. Our “UX Assessment & Strategy” also provides a Creative Direction and Visual Concept to guide the visual design.


Creative Direction

Our design team will research potential style references and coordinate with the Aspen team to decide on the high-level style we would follow in parallel to the strategy.

Deliverables & Activities

Three mood boards with potential styles to follow; and A virtual meeting with the decision-makers to decide on which style to follow.


Visual Concept

Once the style direction is defined, our team will design a set of sample pages. Due to the tight timeline, it is advisable to start with the most relevant pages, such as the homepage and a few reusable templates for both the PDF and the website, quickly. The exact ones will be identified during the Strategy stage.

Deliverables & Activities

  • A 12-page sample PDF with the key pages;
  • A Sample page design with the visual design for the online portion of the project; and
  • A virtual meeting with the decision-makers to get sign-off on the Visual Concept.

Design Phase

Here is when the two workstreams take parallel paths. We have a solid foundation for each course, and since the technical skillsets for each design piece are different, the ideal approach is to have parallel processes.

Editorial Design

Once the strategy is in place, we have a solid idea of what to build and how. The team will work on the multiple technical tasks required to get the content in shape for the design phase, identifying and suggesting potential structural tweaks and opportunities to make the content fit better in the editorial format.

Design & Typesetting

At this stage, we have the building of the PDF publication. It happens in multiple “passes.” Some of these passes go together, while others can be done in parallel. We will define these passes at the beginning of the stage and present them to the Aspen team for feedback.

Usually, the first pass is a structural one, where the content is laid out and broken into multiple sections. It works as a “wireframe” for the publication. The second pass will involve new visual elements such as images and illustrations.

One example of a parallel “pass” would be designing the main graphs, which start at the beginning of the “Design & Typesetting Stage.”

Deliverables & Activities

  • Partial deliverables of the intermediate “passes” of the PDF could be done if the Aspen team wants to be more closely involved in this process. (This results in a slower process, but it is an option); and
  • The final deliverable at this stage will be the Publication PDF, ready for the final review.

Revisions

Once the full Publication PDF is delivered, the Aspen team will have up to two extra rounds of revision. Due to the structure of our process, the client team is in close contact with the product through the “partial deliverables,” making any significant revisions or design changes unlikely at this final stage.

Based on the RFP specifications, we will leave the two “official” revision rounds and the two proofreading rounds available at this stage.

It is important to note that significant structural changes to the Publication PDF might require timeline adjustments. That’s the main reason we include check-ins and feedback rounds in the “partial deliverables.”