What do you do?
I am building a Q&A community, similar to Quora, Vark or Yahoo Answers! to help young men (not to the exclusion of women...) get quality answers to their self-development related questions. I am offering a $400 award for this project as all of the main layout and functionality of the landing page is already taken care of, so I am primarily looking for contributions of aesthetic design.
List the size requirement(s) for your landing page
1024x768, unless this website: http://meta.osqa.net/questions/ is different.
What is your industry?
Describe the target audience for your landing page
The target market is young men from 16-35. They are interested in self-betterment from many angles: they wish to improve their interactions with the opposite sex; they want to look better; they want to feel more powerful and secure in who they are and what they can offer. They have questions about how to accomplish all of this, and the website is a community of like-minded people where they can have them answered.
What 3 things would you like to communicate to your audience through your landing page?
1. This is a place that will help its audience to "man up" and re-connect with their stronger, more confident inner selves.
2. It must convey a powerful feeling of "casual coolness," which should influence the mindset of anyone using the site, enhancing their self-image.
3. This is somewhere that information sought by its users is made readily available and easy to find.
How is your company different from your competitors?
Style and Concept
What landing page design styles do you like?
This is the original (and most popular) site of the kind that I am creating. However, it is intended for programmers, and while the interface is nice and bright, it is also quite plain and I'm not a fan of the color scheme.
My site currently looks exactly the same as this one, except for the content. It is powered by OSQA, an open source Q&A engine. Please explore this site a little and try to come up with a theme that can be reused from one page to the next. There is a strong chance I will hire the winner to complete the design for the rest of the site.
Three sites that I like for their color schemes/design. They are all aimed at a similar audience to the one I will be aiming to attract to this site. www.askmen.com in particular has an interesting variation of schemes depending on the section of the site.
What colors do you want to see in your landing page?
Firstly, I am not tied down to anything. From what I have conveyed of the site's purpose, feel free to explore your whims here.
That being said, my personal take is that the site should display predominantly masculine colors, but not to an overwhelming degree. Black, blues, greys, greens, reds and browns would be welcome, perhaps with brighter colors here or there to offset them.
It is imperative that the main Q&A area be easy on the eyes. The most obvious idea would be black text on a white background (by all means avoid white text/black background, other than for buttons, headings etc.), although this might be difficult to integrate well with the surrounding area if it has a strong theme. A good alternative might be black text on a very light grey background, or something similar. Again, I'm open to suggestions, and by no means 100% tied to black on white.
What colors do you NOT want to see in your landing page?
I don't want anything too garish; so no pink, bright purple, bright green, bright blue. Yellow and orange are acceptable in the right context. Essentially, I'm not looking for anything that's especially feminine or too "Hello Kitty" :) Also, nothing that draws too much attention away from the question & answer areas of the pages.
What adjectives should best describe your landing page?
I'm looking for a clean, uncluttered, Web 2.0 appearance. The site should feel slick and sophisticated while also conveying a certain sense of calmness (like an oasis where one goes to allay one's concerns and anxieties.) This last requisite may seem at odds with "slick and sophisticated," so don't feel absolutely compelled to include it if it's causing difficulty.
What content must be included in the landing page?
Example questions can be made up or taken from any of the similar sites listed.
Also, the right hand column of the page should contain an "Interesting/Ignored Tags area" and a "Recent Tags" area below it, a la www.stackoverflow.com. Other than that, feel free to throw in a fake ad or a box explaining the site, as in the attachment.
Do you have additional info or links you'd like to share?
I have attached a comp of a rough design that was already done for this landing page. My main problem with it is the white text on black background. I like the blue graphic at the top, I like the buttons (except the baby blue ones and green tags), and I would ideally like to stick to this logo, unless you have another one in mind that you think would blow this out of the water (I would advise keeping the Greek "alpha" symbol if that is the case).
I would not object outright to using this page as a jumping-off point - or to keeping certain elements of it - although a powerful re-envisioning, while sticking to the same core concept, would probably have the potential to influence me more.
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