In this podcast we review, or more like debate, two valuable assets of digital marketing: Design and Content. We dive deep into which is more beneficial for your business. This intense debate uncovers the mistakes you’re currently making and 6 breakthrough reasons why you should change your strategy for your landing page today.

The debate of Content vs. Design is much like the chicken and the egg scenario – which came first and which is more important? Let us help break down the decision for you.

The debate about content versus design can be compared to the saying of what came first; the chicken or the egg.
What comes first, the chicken or the egg?

Why is Content ‘Queen’

There are several reasons why content is considered more important than design in marketing. Joseph dives into 3 main points of why ‘Content is Queen’.

Content marketing is a strategic way to create and provide valuable and relevant content to your audience that will lead them to an action. By providing this relevant content specifically to your audience, they will begin to trust you. It is what some people say to be what makes content marketing stand out. Useful content should be the core of your marketing. It is the core of how you can be discovered by new customers organically, creating a connection between them and your brand.

1. All looks, no leverage

Every page on a website needs content or it will come across as useless.

Content encourages users to take action, which is ultimately the main goal. People don’t buy based purely on design, it’s all about what you want to say and what is actually on your website. Content is the most valuable thing to produce and put online, after all. Design helps to emphasise the content, by helping with performance and reaching objectives for your business.

2. Getting ahead of the competition

Search engines, like Google, won’t prioritise your site for its design, but it will rank it highly in search for good content. This means that if people aren’t aware of your website, they will have a hard time finding it on the second page of results. This ties in to search engine optimisation, another huge aspect of effective marketing.

3. Content is Convenience

The content provides the guidelines for the design, although many argue the opposite. Creating the content first, closely followed by the design is a more streamline process, which will save time and energy (as well as potentially decrease the internal back and forth emailing). At Web 3, we use a content first approach with our marketing strategy. This helps to maintain efficiency and consistency.

Content writer producing marketing collateral.
Content sets the guidelines for the design process.

Design is more crucial than content, here’s why…

In our marketing debate, James argues that design is more important than content. Do you think Design first will benefit your business more ?

There are many key concepts to design that go further than just making things look aesthetic. Design is used to initially attract eyes to your brand and highlight the content. Design is what connects your company to your brand, and more importantly, your customer. 

4. Judging a book by its cover (or site)

Let’s be honest, we all have, in one way or another, ‘judged a book by it’s cover’. This notion however, also extends to online. Often users click into a poorly designed website and will immediately click out without even reading the second line, greatly hindering your content strategy. This is exactly what Google looks for as part of their algorithm; audience engagement, and what pulls the audience in. 

5. The design blank page problem

Design is a huge factor in the process of creating great user experience, which is extremely crucial for your business and content strategy. The initial stages of design can give a solid foundation for great content. (Plus, It’s always hard for content writers to sit pen to a blank page). Design helps to spark creativity enhancing the overall content. 

6. Design drives _______ .

You can almost fill in the blank with whatever your business measures success as. Visually engaging with your customers is what ultimately creates engagement and converts it into an action. It incorporates the emotional response and encapsulates the overall feel of the brand. 

… better make it a good one. 

Design strategy for digital marketing is essential.
The design process is crucial for a successful strategy.

Conclusion: The right choice for your business

It’s clear that both components are crucial to the overall success of a strategy. But in saying that, it all comes back to the chicken and the egg. We all have previous experiences shaping our opinions to focus more thoroughly on one or the other. Is the best choice just what works for your own business. 

Listen in

Listen in to what we uncover in our heated debate: Content Vs. Design. We’d love to hear your thoughts, so let us know who do you agree with in the comments below.

We have to watch our tone in this debate! See what we did there?

Podcast: Ep 08 – Content Vs Design


James Banks:

Hello everyone and welcome to another episode of the Web3 Marketing Debate Show. I’m your host James Banks.

Joseph Chesterton:

And I’m your host, Joseph Chesterton.

James Banks:

And today we’ll be discussing… We’ll be debating more like it, content versus design, which one’s better, which one is more valuable. So for this debate I’ll be jumping into the design side of the debate.

Joseph Chesterton:

I will be on the content side.

James Banks:

All right, well, let’s kick things off. So Joseph, tell me why is content superior or why is it more important for businesses to think about, to spend time, effort, energy and resource in as opposed to design?

Joseph Chesterton:

Content versus design I would say is almost chicken before egg. You can’t have good design without content. So if we’re talking about a website, every page on a website needs content. Sure you can put design into the website, but without text on the page then it’s almost probably going to be useless. I would argue that content is very important for businesses.

When people search for your business, they probably go to Google, if they aren’t sure of your brand. Google indexes content, it doesn’t index your design. So content is what is most important in that aspect for SEO as well, or to rank highly in search.

My third point would be content helps people buy. You could have a beautiful design, but without  content or actual context of the page by the text, then most likely people won’t buy from you. So those are my three points on why content is most important. What do you have to say to that?

James Banks:

Well, I think it’s one of those ones you write about chicken before the egg. How can you craft copy and content when you visually have got no idea what the end outcome is going to look like? 

I think just to clarify for our listeners, we’re talking about in the case of creating a new website or a landing page or something that’s going to go online for you to put in front of your audience. 

It makes it very difficult to be able to contextualize what content you actually need to put on the page when you’ve got no bearing or understanding of visually how this thing is going to look, or what the application is.

I think just going to your point as well on search engine optimization, I don’t think you’re correct in saying that design isn’t a factor, it is. And specifically when we break that down, what is design? It’s a great user experience. It’s great user interface practices. It’s being able to create something that’s both appealing and on brand point, that communicates your brand values. 

It effectively engages and talks to your audience and pulls them in and magnetises them into one to find out more. And these are the types of things, particularly on the user experience side that Google is actively looking for and policing as part of the algorithm. 

So design still has its importance of ensuring that not only can you create an effective web experience, but you can also create one that ranks well in search.

But ultimately if we look at both content and design, ‘what is more valuable’, why in your opinion do you believe content is more valuable as opposed to design, Joseph?

Joseph Chesterton:

Well, if you’re getting technical on the certain aspects of search, then sure you could justify it either way, but when it comes to actual content, it’s more valuable.

James Banks:

This isn’t much of a debate.

Joseph Chesterton:

When you talk ‘value’, are you talking about the cost of content versus design or return of content versus design? Because if you were to buy content versus buy design, you can put a buy price tag on design whereas content is often very undervalued. 

Like some of the biggest brands in the world spend tens or even hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars on their brand and logo. Whereas I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t spend hundreds of millions of dollars on the actual texts or content that they put on their pages.

James Banks:

There’s a lot of starving copywriters out there Joseph, it goes both ways.

Joseph Chesterton:

That’s right. But what it is on a page is what will make or break a sale. 

Sure, design comes into play but when it comes to actual people buying from you on your website, then chances are they will consume the content on your site. 

That’s arguably the most valuable thing on your website. What do you have to say to that, James?

James Banks:

Well, I think value is very intrinsic and you can’t honestly put an exact dollar value to a single word or a design. Of course, we all know what the value of bad content and bad design looks like, which is an exercise that no business ever wants to go down. 

But great copy and great content is not uncommon for someone that knows how to craft high converting sales copy that charge $20,000 plus for a sales page.

On the flip side, great designers can charge tens of thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars just to design a page because when it gets to the point of the intangibility of these outcomes, you can’t necessarily directly connect it to a dollar value, but ultimately both are of extremely high importance. 

And I agree with you on the point that businesses typically undervalue what good design and content will do for a business. Many businesses, and I’ll even argue our business would say that great design and great content, there’s nothing more paramount in what we do for our marketing and advertising efforts, other than great design and great content.

Ultimately how we approach things here at Web3 is a little biased with this debate, but we actually take the content first approach, not mobile first or design first or functionality first, but content first. Why do we do that? 

We personally believe that content is the most valuable thing that you can produce and put online. Content is ultimately queen, and design I’d say is very closely followed in that scenario. 

With content and design, design should mould and work with the content to produce and display it in the most engaging way, shape and form as possible.

Getting down into the nitty gritty. You could have a landing page where you have designed it to have say a three stacked headline, but after the content has been created it turns out that a more effective headline only needs two lines. So things like that, then you have to go back and change the design, it actually can be a very inefficient process if you do this at scale. 

Hence, why creating the best possible content regardless of constraints of design is the way in which we approach things. Design then emphasises the content, giving it the best chance of it performing its objectives and serving its goals that it needs to serve and achieve for the business.

So with that said, Joseph, is there anything else you wanted to add to this debate?

Joseph Chesterton:

As far as which one produces the best results from a straight money in the bank, ROI point of view, content I would argue would win, but it’s hard to put an ROI on it and it’s very often undervalued.

A lot of smaller businesses, especially, that come to us often believe that they can write their own content, which in some cases they can, but when it comes to actually writing it in a way that is conversion focused for the correct target market rather than writing it from a business owner point of view. 

When you do write content, it has to be targeted and it has to be crafted for what the content is being written for. So as long as that is considered, then you will get good results from content. And then I guess design comes in after that and is what helps convert and sell.

James Banks:

Absolutely. And not to undervalue the importance of excellent design. We certainly don’t take any shortcuts with design, even though we do take a content first approach here at Web3 but anyway. 

With that said and done, we’ll wrap up another episode of the Marketing Debate Show. Thank you so much for tuning in and dial in next time for our next episode, which will be all about data driven versus creative marketing. Who will win? 

We will see until then, have a great day. We’ll talk to you all soon.

And that’s a wrap for this episode of the Marketing Debate show. If you liked it, please give us a positive rating on your preferred podcasting platform.

Here’s the our most recent previous episodes:

And here’s the next episode: Data-Driven Vs. Creative Marketing: What is more beneficial for your business?