There is a Difference between Good Presentation and Good Content
Let’s start with 3 truths.
1) The best place to be is to have a good presentation with good content. Works in any situation.
2) If you have good presentation and your content sucks, you might still get away with it.
3) If your content is great but your presentation is crap, it’s 50/50 split that could go either way.
Right. Interestingly, this was one of the topics we discussed during the Designer Mentoring program. It came up a number of times, so I felt it should be shared here with all of you as well. It is quite a difficult concept to grasp, so please bear with me while I try to explain?
Time and time again I see this issue crop up in Design. Some common scenarios include designers that sketch well (presentation) but produce unusable or poor designs (content), or portfolios that have great layouts (presentation) but suffer from poor image quality or work (content).
The trick is to be able to distinguish between good presentation and good content.
The first thing to do is to not get overly caught up with the allure of technical skills like sketching, rendering or even public speaking. While a certain level of skill is still required, for the sake of argument, lets consider that a great presentation excites the eyes but often fools it.
In this context, what is great content? Great content just works, great content makes sense, great content is timeless, and great content is beautiful (more than skin deep!). Most important of all, great content still works even if it was let down by a poor presentation. Try to look past the presentation and into the core of a design by asking yourself why it works. Be critical with everything. Don’t just look, but see.
Oh one last thing, substitute “content” with “idea” or “concept” and you still get the same results.