Adobe Post

For the past three decades Adobe’s core focus has been on creative pro applications. Around mid 2014, the company began to look at ways to build upon its success, and expand its mission to bring creativity to everyone.

This new mission required design research, to investigate how non designers interact with the world of design. The research led towards the creation of a set of new apps, aimed at designers and non designers, that would allow them to quickly and easily create graphics. Adobe Post was one of the earliest projects to pursue this new initiative.

My role

I led design for Adobe Post from the inception of the project. As design lead I wore many hats; including running the initial customer interviews, developing the customer personas, creating early designs and prototypes, and preparing proof of concept demos for executives to green light the project towards production. Throughout the project I mentored two junior designers, and was responsible for the final high fidelity deliverables for engineering implementation.

  • Customer interviews
  • Persona development
  • Designs and prototypes
  • Usability tests
  • Executive demos
  • Mentor junior designers
  • High fidelity deliverables

The challenge

Morgan is a small business owner and blogger. She wants her graphics to be unique and doesn't feel comfortable taking images from Google or Flickr, because they're not her own. She's not after templates because she wants unique designs that match the content of her posts, and she can't afford to pay a designer for each post.

If you want your pin to be clicked or repinned, you need to spend extra time helping it to stand out in the crowd. Skipping this task may make the difference between a post that gets forgotten in a day and one that goes viral.

I actually own Photoshop, but I have no idea how to use it. I keep saying I’m going to teach myself to use it, but then my brain starts hurting and I stop thinking about it.

Remix to start

During our interviews, we discovered that customers didn't have a good starting point when creating new designs. Unlike designers, they don't have time to research visual evidence before starting to create a graphic. Our solution was to allow users to remix starter graphics in the app. We would update these on a regular basis, and eventually allow users to publish their own remix-able designs.

Design View

Morgan is not familiar with activating tools or pro design app workflows. She is however used to apps like Facebook and Instagram. The design view is tailored for a user to quickly choose global ingredients for their design. They can quickly choose templates (design filters), color palettes, and photo filters that match the look they are going for.

More control

During early studies, we found that some users wanted more control over their designs. The design of the app uses progressive disclosure for users who are more savvy with design. If you tap and select individual items, you get more controls to edit colors, fonts and shapes. Each UI section has a recommended area to assist the user in choosing options that look good.

Post launch

During my time on the project—around 2 years— the team grew from one designer and one engineer, to a team of 4 designers and 25 engineers. The product received 200,000 downloads in its first day, and has kept its 5 star rating on the iOS app store since launch.

Not only is Adobe taking over stock but they also want to take over the social marketing game. This is a great app for creating social posts of any kind: paid or free posts.

As an educator, I love this app. I’m able to modify and change things and post things to Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. It allows me to show my students another way of showing their understanding and creativity, especially in the area of STEAM education.