Creatives Kill to Work Here
The UX of Chandelier Creative
In my quest to find sites to rip apart and examine the ticking insides, I generally hop, skip and jump over creative agency websites. Many of them follow the same patterns without much variation. They may be more or less creative with how they execute that pattern but it’s generally the same.
I found an agency that veers away from the center enough to find something interesting at the fringes. Chandelier Creative has put together a site that’s meant to attract talent as much as clients. And that’s where their approach to attraction caught my attention.
I’m going to break this down from the perspective of a creative looking for their next opportunity and how the site is designed to speak to them.
The home page starts very simply with the work. When I visit an agency website I go straight to the work section. It says more about the agencies values, ambitions, and work ethic than any words ever could.
The work is also important because it could someday be work in your portfolio if you end up working there. Does it represent the type of work you want to do or would be proud to be a part of?
Having the work first on the site answers that question very quickly for a prospective creative. Letting you know if you should proceed or call it quits and move on to the next agency.
A hero video at the top of the page plays a select recent campaign. Beneath that a flexible grid layout with cards is used to surface the company’s work as well as culture posts.
The grid has thumbnails that come in three varieties—portrait, landscape and square. While this doesn’t give the most consistently visual layout, it does allow the work to appear without being forced into a particular aspect ratio. If the best way to preview the work is in a landscape layout, it has that option to fit where it works best, rather than being shoehorned into another shape that doesn’t work.
The grid of work and culture posts is interjected by a section of events. Which normally isn’t a big deal, but when you have advertising luminaries like George Lois stopping by, it becomes a huge point of differentiation. The events they hold show a real commitment to learning from the best, to be the best, and an overall investment in the culture of learning. The cost to bring George Lois to your agency for an event has to be pretty steep.
A quote of praise for the company in large type brings another interjection to break up the steady grid of work. The quote is taken from Ad Age and reads, “Chandelier named one of the top 50 companies creatives would kill to work for.” This helps to fill out the perception of the company for the designer. It’s a co-sign to the very message they’re trying to send. Their work, their commitment to growth and learning, and what others are saying about them all point to Chandelier being a place you want to be.
This page looks like what you would typically expect from an agency. A quick elevator pitch touting its’ history and culture.
The header text is used wisely though. The links for the references are placed directly in the copy. If they talk about “creating new companies” they link that text directly to the work they’ve done for Harry’s. This helps turn what could have been an empty elevator pitch about their capabilities into evidence of a track record well worn with success.
From there they proceed to show some hand picked pieces of work. Highlighting big national brands like Lululemon, Smartwater and Banana Republic. Adeptly showing that they can play in the big leagues. And also that working with Chandelier Creative includes very few risks. They know how to perform for big brands and deliver quality.
Chandelier has 4 locations and they put a lot of work into making them very individual.
The photography is focused on the spaces themselves and all of the unique nooks and accoutrements of each environment. Hoping to show the love and detail that’s being put into the space and building a parallel to how they would put the same effort into the work.
Each location is broken into its’ sensory experiences. It’s hard to get an overall sense for an office online, but by relating it to other sensory experiences—feels like, smells like, sounds like, tastes like—Chandelier hopes to engage your senses in a way that’s reminiscent of every location.
Join Us Page
Chandelier does something out of the ordinary with their application process. Rather than dictating an entrance process they leave it open for you to use your creativity to make an impact on them.
They’re looking for creatives who can capture the attention of an audience. Using the agency as the first audience that needs to be captured is a great way to see the ideas that prospective creatives can invent. If you can’t grab their attention with your skills then you can’t do much for a national brand either.
Also pay close attention to the way they use their headlines on this page. The copy is phrased like a conversation. If you just skim the page quickly, you can get the gist of what they want you to do without even reading all of the provided text. A great bit of forethought for creatives with short attention spans.
By building an experience that puts their creative work first, Chandelier Creative is able to appeal to clients and creatives in one broad stroke. Because at the end of the day, all anyone cares cares about is the work.