Over the last month or two I’ve mentioned on a number of occasions that I’ve had a small team working on a redesign of ProBlogger.
I’m happy to say that some great progress has been made and we are aiming for a release of the new design tomorrow (all going well).
While the current ProBlogger design and logo has served me well (thanks to the talent of designer Rachel Cunliffe who designed it – and who I might say came up with a very innovative design for the time it was done – over two and a half years ago) I’ve increasingly become aware that it’s become a little dated and tired – particularly as I’ve added new features such as a job board, b5 blog roll, new ad formats etc.
While I’m sad to see the old design go and I’m a little fearful of how the new direction will be received I’m also excited to show it off as it marks a new beginning and direction for ProBlogger.
Ben and Mike have both worked hard at their tasks and together I think we’ve come up with something both fresh and functional that will hopefully see the site through for some time now.
While Ben puts the finishing touches on the new template I thought I’d start the show and tell sessions by revealing the new logo.
So without further ado….
A few notes/thoughts on the process:
- You’ll see that it’s a real departure from the previous logo (and you’ll get a hint at some of the colors of the new template).
- The brief I gave Mike was that I wanted something simple and clean – yet something with symbolism.
- We wanted to retain a ‘P’ but also keep the word ProBlogger.
- The colors are more subtle (no more bright orange/gold – a color that some readers struggled with depending upon their monitors). Having said this – the coloring isn’t a complete departure from the current design.
- The ‘atom’ like design is about community/network (although some who I’ve shown it to have read into it that it’s about the ‘energy’ of the ProBlogger Community)
I’ll be honest in saying that the design of the logo (and the overall redesign of the template) was not an easy process. Not because of the guys I was working with but because there were so many possibilities and potential goals. ProBlogger has come to mean many things to many people and to come up with something that summed it all up was impossible. My hope is that rather than the logo bringing meaning to ProBlogger that ProBlogger will bring meaning to the logo (for more on what I mean by this check out a short piece that Seth Godin posted a while back on Logos – thanks to Seth both for the post and for his feedback on the logo during the testing process).
The template – Teasers:
The new blog template will hopefully be launched in the next 24 hours and once again is another departure from the current design in many ways. I’ve been testing it with a number of readers and the reactions have been encouraging – although some have been surprised by the extent of the changes.
- The new design features no AdSense and will be monetized only by 125 x 125 ads (enquire about being an advertiser here) and a few affiliate programs/recommended products
- The blog itself will be fresher, cleaner and less cluttered
- We’ll be utilizing a footer area to de-clutter some of the sidebar
- The front page at problogger.net will look and operate radically differently – but there will be an option for people who just want to see a more normal looking ‘blog’
The new template is just one step in the evolution of ProBlogger and I’m certain that in the days, weeks and months after we launch it this week that there will be numerous changes, tweaks and new features added – many of which I hope will be a result of your comments and suggestions. I’d love it if you’ll beta test it with me over the next few weeks.
Thanks to Mike and Ben for all their work on this – particularly Ben who has been on the job for weeks now and has poured a lot of time and energy into the project. Thanks also to the numerous people that I asked to look over this logo and template design – your feedback and critiques were all very helpful in refining what we have produced).
So now it’s over to the ProBlogger community to have your say about the logo. As always, your opinion is valued and will be heard – all I ask is that you be constructive with your critiques so that we can continue to improve what we’re building here with the site.
PS: stay tuned for the new template design in the coming hours.