Revista Voceros

A single place to talk about arts, music and culture.

Overview

Revista Voceros is a digital magazine where people can follow, engage with and enjoy the urban culture in Colombia.

This project involves the design of the downloadable digital magazine as well as its news portal and digital kiosk. All the design considerations for the websites are the outcome of the discovery of the downloadable digital magazine process.

Moreover, this is not only a design case study but also a business case study where I understood how to learn from failures, step back and then come back again stronger.

Why Revista Voceros?

Finding trustworthy news in regards to hip hop and urban culture can be difficult, especially when we have many people claiming to be journalists themselves and build up a blog to begin to write stuff.

It is not easy to find all these news in a single place and get access from all devices. There are times where you want to read on your commute or while eating lunch and should be able to do that.

The concept of Revista Voceros is being the speaker of everybody that thinks of a change but does not have the voice to express it. Revista Voceros is here to support hip hop and street art community.

Research

The research I conducted helped me understand users needs and why they’d love our product. I talked to many rappers, graffiti painters and people in general that are immersed into the urban culture and got interesting key insights.

“I’m a rapper currently looking for places to promote my music. It’s always hard for me to push my career further since there are very few spaces where I can put my music into and reach potential listeners. It is time consuming and very expensive for me to get the word out”
David Argota 25 years, rapper

"I’m a college student always looking for cultural and social events. As a teenager I spend a lot of time on social media but don’t know all the culture promoters out there so it’s hard for me to catch up. It’s not that I’ll go to all events but I’d like to see how things are moving”
Victoria Cuentas 22 years, student.

“I’m a music enthusiast who is always looking for new music. I love supporting artists by paying tickets or purchasing their clothing. Although it is great to do that, I still feel like I want to get to know them better, like kind of know what motivates them create the songs I love to listen to”
Marcela González 29 years, designer.

From the business perspective, these interviews translate to:

For musicians - Revista Voceros needs to bridge the gap between artists and fans, allowing musicians to reach listeners the easiest way possible and keep them up to date with their activity.

For social event attendees - Provide an environment where they can view, share, and participate in all activities there are nearby.

For enthusiasts - Allowing followers to get to know their favorite artists better by giving them thoughtful interviews.

Downloadable magazine

I had some ideas of the layouts of each part of the magazine (interviews, articles and so on). Every urban-related magazine looked sort of the same at that time and each one of them had a hard time crossing the line between urban and aesthetics. Hip hop doesn’t have to look ugly.

I knew that the magazine was going to be followed by non-urban-related people due to its inspiring concept so I wanted to create a strong brand since the very beginning. The layout and language had to be just perfect.

Screens of first issues.

The first release of the magazine gave me good insights about what people liked and disliked in regards to concept, design and language. Doing some interviews, people:

- Liked the concept but not too much the design.

- Thought that the tone of the interviews could improve.

- Wanted to connect with artists in a better way and know more insights of their music and way of living.

After six issues, the magazine had 354 monthly reads on average and 1,020 followers on social media. Not good enough so I decided to step back and redefine some things in the language and design. I gathered the concept was just right. perfect.

Screens of second releases.

This second stage of the magazine had amazing results:

- Reads increased from 354 to 7,600 on average after other six issues published.

- People were starting to recommend the magazine causing an increment from ~1,020 to 10,000+ people in the community within six months.

Current releases.

Business takeaways

I had some ideas of the layouts of each part of the magazine (interviews, articles and so on). Every urban-related magazine looked sort of the same at that time and each one of them had a hard time crossing the line between urban and aesthetics. Hip hop doesn’t have to look ugly.

News portal design

The first intent of the website didn’t have content at all. It was just a place where showcased the last issue and a purchase link. One business decision was to include news as well as part of the brand awareness but keeping “premium” content to the downloadable magazine.

It’s a grid-based website and does not contain anything that can distract them from reading the news, articles, and interviews.

Articles section and single article

Key aspect to keep in mind is that we wanted to maintain awareness of new issues. We placed widgets in key areas of the website: fixed widget on sidebar within single articles and on the bottom of featured images.

Digital kiosk

What would be a good way to display a digital kiosk where purchases are enjoyable?

As a marketing strategy, showcasing the featured product first increase conversion. If that’s the first time someone visits the website, we provide a little summary of what Revista Voceros is and encourage them to purchase the last issue.

Design takeaways

Having done the editorial layout for the downloadable magazine helped me define the type of layout Vocero’s users like. I translate the same concept and system to the e-commerce and news site for users to feel like they’re navigating the same platform even though it’s meant to have different purposes.

There are times where designers need to keep in mind different platforms: tablets, phones, laptops, but the experience while using the product should be the same. Users don’t like feeling confusing since we are in a very fast-paced world where immediate decisions are taken.