My consultation with the effective color and design maven

January 5, 2012 by  
Filed under Coaching, Online Marketing

She prefers to be called an Effective Website Specialist. So in all due respect, please think of her that way.

It was scheduled for one hour on a dreary fall day which could have added to my aggravated mood. I was regretting having made the appointment. I wanted to get a second opinion on the colors I had chosen for my website. But I was becoming more certain with my choice. Did I really need an expert? As I kept repeatedly hearing, people only stayed on a website for a few seconds, so I thought it important to get the experts involved to improve my capture rate. By the time of the call however, I questioned my decision in hiring her because I had pretty well figured out the website colors and design I wanted, and felt secure with them. I had seen the combination of colors used on other websites and I thought they looked great. What I liked most was the look of freshness and cleanness.

The phone rang with the long distance signal and it was her calling punctually. She exuded a lot of confidence. We went through the usual pleasantries and I told her I had decided on a color combination. I figured she would tell me what was right with my choice. WRONG!!! Instead she had me identify three words that portrayed what I wanted viewers to feel when they saw my website. Silence for a few seconds…I thought of the first word that came to my mind. “Excitement…” then “Trust…” and then “Curiosity.”

She came up with the most unlikely colors for me: Red, Orange and Bright Yellow. For someone like me, who is non-visual I see colors as in “Crayola colors,” so I was seeing flashes of Fire Engine Red and getting really dismayed. She then went on to explain a nice shade of maroon would look perfect. Whew… I relaxed.

But what happened to my blue I had so adored? She explained that blue was used as a color of trust (think banks and police), and that we could use it but it wasn’t a complimentary color to red. UH-OH. What does that have to do with anything?

The site I had chosen had blue and red, I had seen other sites with these colors on them and furthermore, I loved it. Didn’t that count for something? She explained yes, definitely I should go with my heart, but I should also be thinking about how long someone would stay on my page, that there was a science to it. I felt very torn. Colors had always been emotional to me, not scientific. I thought if I liked something so much wouldn’t there be some other people who also liked what I liked.

She encouraged me to go to sites like:

We then looked at other websites I admired. None of them were following any rules. Somehow their look had just fallen together without using complimentary colors.

On the one hand while knowing how important my website was, I resented having to study these color websites to come up with ideas and rules for mine. I wanted to intuitively find my dream website. I wanted to imagine it in my mind’s eye. I wanted magical manifestation.

I had a conflict going on. I vacillated between my original favorite which screamed “Trust” and only a little “Excitement.” Or should I be daring and try to be riveting. I kept leaning toward the color turquoise. I have always loved that color. She had said that bright colors exude “excitement.” Or would it look bubble-gummy? It is also a shade of blue which exudes “trust.” I knew I wasn’t going to follow the rules on the color wheel, but rather the rules in my heart as to what felt right, so I thought two shades of purple with it, one crayola purple (denotes wealth and women like jewel tones) and the other a soft lilac. Did I chance to be so daring? Me??? Turqoise with two shades of purple.

All in all, the hour was well spent and thought provoking. It was a real wake up call for me. The ideas I got out of the call are still reverberating with me and I am constantly reminded of the nagging small details in starting up a website. I am really pleased I decided to get a second opinion from the color maven and design maven, whoops, the Effective Marketing Specialist because it opened up my eyes to new possibilities for my website and I think it will be more exciting than anything I could have ever imagined.

Her name is Stacy Karacostas and she is very easy to talk to and I would highly recommend her. Her details are below.

Stacy Karacostas
Practical Marketing Expert & Business Lifestyle Architect


Sarah Jo Wood is founder of Evolving Advisors Inc. and author of ‘How to turn a No or a Maybe into a Yes!”  Her coaching program teaches entrepreneurs like you to overcome objections so you can sign up all the clients you want, fill your practice, and increase your bottom line.  To begin supercharging your sales, download your complimentary sales package today at

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