Career & Business

ML148: Jack Butcher on Using Design to Visualize Value, Separating Income from Time and Productizing Yourself

Discover the principles of design that separate forgettable brands from iconic ones, how to productize your skills and standout in the new economy and the curriculum building methods for creating successful online courses.
Nasos Papadopoulos


Jack Butcher is a designer, entrepreneur and the founder of Visualize Value – a content platform teaching people to communicate visually and build great online products.

Jack started off in his career as a graphic designer and after several spells in Creative Director roles in different agencies and startups, he set up his own agency business. After a while, the business started to take its toll on him so he decided to productise his skills in branding, design and strategy for a wider audience.

After growing a big audience on Twitter and Instagram with his signature VV graphics, he created two successful courses - How to Visualize Value, a playbook for creating meaningful visual communication; and Build Once Sell Twice, where he teaches his process for creating digital products and taking VV's revenue to $100K/month.

In this conversation we discuss

- The principles of design that separate forgettable brands from iconic ones
- How to productize your skills and standout in the new economy
- The curriculum building methods Jack has used for his successful courses

We also speak about the value of transparency in marketing and Jack even gives me a little coaching session as I discuss my challenges with running and scaling a content marketing agency. If you want to learn more about visual communication, or separate your income from your time, this won't disappoint.

Show Notes

  • Jack wasn't a model student in school. How did he figure out what he really wanted to do in life and what was the starting point of his career in graphic design? [05:06]
  • How do we strike a balance between exposure and experience? What does Jack have to say about these two concepts after working on different roles with a range of different clients through the years? [09:47]
  • Jack shares the mindset and realization that drove him to starting his own business as opposed to working for a creative firm. [11:05]
  • What is the value of good design? Jack weighs in on the form versus functionality argument and how an idea's velocity can be increased by good design. [12:48]
  • How does communication design play a role in a brand’s stylistic decisions? [14:17]
  • When working with clients, how does the idea of restraint give designers more space to create a better design? How can designers shift a client’s mindset from ‘we want you to do this’ to ‘let's listen to the experts'? [16:36]
  • How important are ‘intangibles’ like relationships and goodwill when it comes to branding, whether it’s personal or for business? [18:57]
  • How do we separate ourselves from others in a highly-competitive and efficiency-driven work sphere? Why is it important to see yourself as more than just an asset to a particular industry or company? [20:26]
  • Jack divulges how the difficulty of letting go and the refusal to acknowledge the need for change slowed down his process of achieving his ideal agency model. [23:18]
  • Everyone we work with will always have a different direction and a different process in solving their particular problems. How do we develop our skills and solve these problems at the same time? Where do we start when creating a process that works for everyone? [28:30]
  • Why focusing on what we uniquely well is more effective than taking on a number of different tasks [30:27]
  • When creating a course curriculum, there are three areas that you need to address: foundational knowledge, practical application, and psychological barriers. Where did Jack start in addressing all these things for his courses? [33:45]
  • Jack explains the concept behind doing work that can be repurposed in different ways. Why is explaining the process of how we do things a valuable asset? [37:28]
  • When talking about our process and our business, what are the things that we should protect? What do people want to learn from each other’s processes? [39:43]
  • How does being transparent about your business and your failures help build a better relationship with your clients and customers? [41:50]
  • How do you build a community that’s constantly engaged and interested in what you do?  [44:07]
  • Closing statements [47:29] 

Resources

🖥 Visualize Value

📄 Jack's Visualize Value Story

🐦 @jackbutcher

▶️Building a Digital Brand from $0 — $3,000/day

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