Strengthening Cohesion for Narrative and Visual Storytelling

Two people working together side by side on their laptops.

Alchemizing a rich UI/UX experience requires a choreography of different layers to a design. Usability, accessibility, user-centricity, the litany is ever-growing, yet going back to basics, the digital pair for web design truly begins with design and content copy.  Web design and it’s overall messaging and microcopy should always align to create an overall sense of cohesion to build a robust user experience. Chasms and inconsistencies between visual and narrative storytelling can diminish the overall enjoyment of a web design and can disrupt a brand’s overall image. Creating a cohesive digital experience ultimately begins at the nexus between copy and design in a unified balance. 

Person on iPad designing UI

Aligning on Stakeholder Brand Standards

For UI/UX designers and content writers to commence their initiative on a digital design project, there should always be an emphasis on fleshing out and understanding brand standards. A true understanding of brand guidelines and overall project objectives can streamline tonality for design and copy to match up together. This also ensures both teams are aiming to evoke the same emotions within visual storytelling and messaging. When both teams are on the same page, stakeholder visions and project goals can be kicked off on the right foot. 

Company collaborating on web design.

The Same Starting Line

Within the digital design realm, there is an ongoing conversation on whether a web design should begin with visuals or messaging, or rather if a design should be formulated around its copy. Although every project is subjective and can require its own unique game plan, copy curating and design directions should ultimately commence at the same startling line if, and when possible. The goal is to find a balance between teams, even at the conceptual level so there are no surprises from either side as the project moves down the pipeline. A great way to achieve this is by collaborating with copywriters from the get-go, particularly during the wireframing phase. This reduces siloed groups and clarifies how much content needs to be written per section, the flow of the storytelling throughout the user journey, areas to develop CTAs, and strengthening visual hierarchy.  

Much like design, the copy does not need to be finalized, because it will perpetually be iterated, however, preliminary copy, in lieu of “lorem ipsum” can fully help clarify how a web design will look contextually when shared internally or with stakeholders. Not only does this ensure cohesion, but productivity as well. 

Two people collaborating together on UI and copy cohesion.

Communication and Synchronization 

Communication with stakeholders is imperative in achieving iterations that are in line with the overall project vision. Yet, to ensure that copy and design are on the same trajectory, internal communication on each project is the lifeline to a project’s growth. Sharing and regrouping on any new changes should be communicated within teams to avoid confusion or gaps in information. This can be achieved through communication channels that all teams have access to, and more effectively, by meeting in person or virtually to walk through the design or content changes. This allows both teams to understand every design/copy thought process, what the next steps will be, and if any refinements needed to be completed. Clear communication creates a proactive way of working and can even spark new, exciting ideas as a collective. Design and copy go hand-in-hand and synchronization between them is crucial for a unified experience.