Carolyn Swanhall
Learning Experience Designer

Symphony
Ventures

Symphony Ventures

Client

Symphony Ventures is a professional services firm specializing in robotic process automation (RPA) solutions to transform the future of work. 

Project Scope

I worked with Symphony Ventures to transform an existing 22-part blog series on "Picking the Right RPA Tool" into a digital ebook to be used as a lead generation and sales enablement tool. This project was completed with two other members of the 2017 cohort of the Startup Institute. 

Goals

  • Design an adaptable ebook template that emphasizes Symphony's existing brand guidelines and best practices in SEO and UX
  • Build a comprehensive marketing strategy and landing page for promoting the ebook
  • Create a digital tool that will enable Symphony Ventures to build its reputation as a thought leader in RPA implementation 

3
team members
6
weeks
85
ebook pages
11K+
downloads
Discovery
Click here to view the full mood board

Click here to view the full mood board

Competitive Analysis 

To gain a better understanding of how downloadable white papers and ebooks are used as a lead generation tool and to identify design features and concepts to aid in the ebook development, I completed a competitive analysis focused on professional service firms and companies balancing informative and actionable content. 


Mood Board

After the competitive analysis, I collected design elements from the competitive analysis, Symphony Ventures' existing assets, and online image galleries to construct a mood board to draw inspiration from for the ebook design. 

Given stakeholder input after the presentation of the mood board, the focus of the design would highlight iconography from the existing blog series and additional elements that conveyed the modern workplace, the speed of innovation, and the interaction between humans and technology.

Content Design
Symphony Ventures

Copyediting

Next our task was to compile and then edit the raw content of the ebook series to ensure that there was a consistent voice and structure that highlighted how users could utilize the ebook to begin the RPA implementation process. 

This process took two weeks and helped establish the overall content themes and highlighted areas where visual elements could be utilized to reinforce key messages/concepts.

Structure

To add additional flexibility to the ebook and its potential uses, the blog content was restructured around the eight (8) subareas involved in the implementation of RPA:

  • Architecture
  • Usability
  • Integrations
  • Exception handling
  • Security
  • Configuration features
  • Deployment features
  • Vendor support and documentation 

This structure would allow for the ebook to be downloaded in full or be distributed through other means.

Iteration
Symphony Ventures

Strategy

Once the content of the ebook had been finalized and approved by the company stakeholders, I began designing layouts in InDesign that could be utilized to differentiate between each section of the ebook and provide a clear visual story about the RPA implementation process.

Overall, the visual style set the stage for Symphony Ventures as an expert in the RPA space by emphasizing trust through quotes, large-scale images, engaging infographics, and printable checklists to guide users through the implementation process. 

The style was inspired by those examined during the competitive analysis but within the lens of Symphony Ventures' overall brand. 

Throughout the design process, emphasis was placed on how to incorporate SEO best practices throughout the ebook. For example creating full-spread infographics and checklists that could easily be repurposed through social promotions, and ensuring that keywords would be highlighted in headers, links, and image file names. 

Iteration

The ebook underwent a total of seven (7) rounds of iteration, from establishing the initial layouts to fine-tuning the typography and additional elements that would tie each section of the ebook together visually.

Throughout the iterative process, members of my Startup Institute team provided feedback on the content and collaborated on the design of a marketing strategy and landing page for the official launch of the ebook. 

Results

Impact

Six months after the final delivery of the ebook, the rebranded "HfS RPA Bible" was launched by Symphony Ventures in partnership with industry leader, HfS Research. The ebook was made available to download on both the Symphony Ventures and HfS Research websites and received over 11,000 downloads within one month of its launch.

Reflection

This was my first time designing a digital project at this scale and provided a great opportunity to utilize my previous graphic design experience, while learning about the power of SEO in ebook design and properly utilizing Master Pages in InDesign. 

This project allowed me to demonstrate my project management skills through managing client deliverables and timelines using Box, Trello, and InVision, and negotiating unforeseen changes in the structure of our team when one of our three team members had to leave the project. 

"Carolyn's sharp design instincts, insights, and recommendations were critical to the project's success. She did everything - from copyediting, refining the messaging and content, creating brand elements, as well as designing a layout template that we can reuse for other projects. She rapidly iterated and improved on initial design mocks, ultimately delivering a product that exceeded expectations and scope requirements."
- Katrina Demulling, U.S. Operations Manager, Symphony Ventures