Branding , Building and the Knowledge Gap

I am currently knee-deep in the mysteries of front-end development. It has been a productive few weeks and I’m pleased to say that HTML + CSS are treating me well, so far. Javascript is a tricky mistress, complicated language makes an already-unfamiliar approach more error-strewn. I’ve spent a couple of hours this afternoon trying to understand the basic structure and it’s dismal how little progress I have made. I may even have gone backwards.

Branding and Copy – how to convey trust?

BUT, whilst I work on this weighty problem, I have also been working with a friend to build her business website: First Descent Doula. I’m not coding this from scratch, because the wix templates available are frankly lovely, but also, I need to make sure that when it has been built, Kate can edit most of it herself.

My role, has been voice, design, branding as well as coming up with the web copy and content ideas. It’s been really fun working with a friend, as we share similar taste and values, so deciding on the right message hasn’t been terribly difficult.

In terms of branding, doula services are uniquely-placed, neither medical,  nor forcibly zen, Kate and other good doulas simply advocate for the family. It sounds simple, and almost unnecessary (why would you need a doula if you partner is around to help?) but it’s an incredibly reassuring service. Think about it, if you were a first-time mum, or new to the clusterfuck (sometimes there is no other word for it) that is the American medical health insurance system, having someone knowledgable and experienced on hand is incredibly reassuring.

As someone going through her first pregnancy now, I’m continually amazed at how little  is explained to me,  which tests are highly recommended versus those that are merely optional, birthing options, birth education classes: none of this is explained, I have to look for myself, which can involve a lot of time on the phone to the insurance company, double and triple-checking the facts given to make sure I don’t end up with a nasty bill. Having a doula in your corner helps fill in this ‘Knowledge Gap’.

In terms of branding, how to convey all of this as effectively as possible, whilst still keeping the text readable and concise?

To keep us focussed and consistent, I had Kate think about the values she most wanted to embody for her clients. This is what she came up with:


Kate is YOUR doula, to help you and your family get the birth you want.


As your doula, Kate is flexible and adept at solving problems. Birth plans have a habit of going out the window, it’s Kate’s job as your doula to keep things moving in the right vein, whilst your partner or labour coach can focus on the mother.


Kate wanted to make it very clear that all birth dreams and ideas are ok, she has worked with mothers who want an epidural the second they walk through the door, to mothers who want to build a shrine to honour a guru.

As everyone in the world seems to have a strong opinion on motherhood, birth and pregnancy, Kate wants to act as a buffer between clients and those strong opinions.


Summarising all of the above in a tagline might be difficult but Kate, single-handedly came up with ‘Know Your Options’. It’s perfect: succinct, serious without being solemn and it makes it very clear that options exist. I also like how it supports Kate’s judgment-free approach.


Which colours are reassuring and trustworthy? established yet contemporary? Official, but, in this instance,  not medical. We also wanted to make sure that something of Kate’s natural sunniness was captured, as her natural warmth has contributed to her thriving doula practice.

This is what we are currently working through, colour choices, fonts, content itself, images. It’s really enjoyable and satisfying to think through fairly abstract ideals into the realities of fonts and images.

The site will go live soon, we’re still polishing the details and working on cool content initiatives for Boulder-area mums. It will be interesting to see which parts of it we get right and which parts evolve over time.


One thought on “Branding , Building and the Knowledge Gap”

  1. I have so loved working with you! I trust you infinitely. Your encouragement and rock solid ideas made the site something to brag about. You think of all the things I never would! And this is a very nice post.

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