Originally an idea we had about 5 years ago, taking advantage of this year’s initiative to do weekly challenges, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to tackle… ‘Sing it to me’.

‘Sing it to me’ is something I often think about and I really can’t tell you why it hasn’t happened before today. The basic idea comes from the fact that I don’t really like to read and would most probably be more than happy with all text everywhere being sung to me or at least dictated by Stephen Hawking. 

When designing a website, you are faced with lots of challenges from design, usability, custom experience, calls to action and making sure you are portraying the right message. Quite often, this involves trying to provide simple, approachable copy, explaining complex topics and ideas.

Inevitably, you will end up with several paragraphs of text, often far more than you actually need, but still far less than you wrote in your first draft. Once all the copy is on the site, the next challenge is, ‘how do you get your site users to read it’? There are lots of UI/UX answers to this problem and many blogs on the web that can help you; here at the Cake Mix however, ‘Sing it to me’ has provided an interactive almost karaoke style way of encouraging a site user to read or absorb the copy as they listen to a talented musical artist share their own rendition of it.

After the initial chat around the concept, Jamie formed a plan to use Fiverr to source freelancers that might be interested in taking on the odd request.

Here’s the message I sent out to the artists identified by Jamie:

Hi {insert name}

We had an idea years ago to add a feature to our website called ‘Sing it to me’, the idea being that the copy on our website would have a speaker icon next to it that when clicked, there’s an amazing (or maybe terrible) rendition of the copy sung from different artists. This would be amazing!

We have decided it’s time to make our dream a reality and we think you should be part of it. We hope you’re up for it.

This is the plan:

1. We are looking for 2 artists from Fiverr to sing a paragraph of copy from our site. Here is an example of the length and style of lyrics:

“Commercial Creativity

Whatever your marketing stack, growth strategy or industry, we have the skills and experience to get whatever you’re trying to get done, done. We’re marketers who use data, technology and awesome creative to help companies grow. Funded start-ups have a unique set of problems to turn a proven idea into scalable growth. We show them how.” – www.thecakemix.co.uk

2. 1 skills swap – we have already traded a logo design for our first ‘Sing it to me’

3. We are going to try ourselves, none of us can sing but we like to get involved

4. We are going to document everything in video and blog/write-up format shared on social and our website, we will mention your Fiverr page both.

We think you are very talented and would like to know what you can do for £25 and £75, we only have lyrics/website copy. We are also looking for a quick turnaround preferably 3 days, you have complete artistic license.

Can’t wait to hear back from you – Any questions, don’t hesitate to ask.

Unexpectedly, we received a fair few positive responses from the artists, each of which wanted in on the odd request. Game on!

As you can see, the take-home from the replies and conversations we received from our outreach, was clearly a yes, it was a goer! These amazing artists were actually up for the challenge. However, it was also clear that my original brief was a bit confusing. Where I had tried to share the story behind what we were doing, I ended up complicating it and making it harder for the artists to connect with the required task. To be honest I don’t normally write copy so I should have shared the task with Doyle or Ben!

Tip: Stick to the facts and use a simple instruction in your first outreach message. Once someone is engaged, you can always share more.

Another thing we found hard was choosing who to engage with. Do you wait for more responses to come through before pressing buttons or do you dive in at the deep end and just commission the freelancers that get back to you first. Next time, we would most probably lay down some rules around this and only reach out to X amount of people, giving X time to ourselves to make decisions. To be honest, I was so excited to get going that I started commissioning straight away and ended up going over budget, only by £25 in all fairness, but we all agreed that it was well worth it! Make it rain.

Another great thing that was embraced through this challenge was the ‘Skills Swap’. Through serendipitous timing, Jamie’s sister had recently joined a new band and had just offered to pay Jamie to design a new logo for them, but rather than accept cash it seemed like too good of an opportunity to trade skills instead. He decided to offer a skills swap; if they would sing a paragraph from our website, he would do the design in return. The band loved their logo and we love their quality track. SO GOOD!

Because of our slightly confusing brief, we ended up unintentionally offering the same skills swap to everyone we contacted, but this did seem to peak interest. A one-man barber quartet actually asked us if we would be willing to swap skills! Of course, we obliged. Unfortunately, the timing meant that it didn’t work out this time, but it has made us commit to the idea and you can now officially find ‘Skills Swap’ on our website.

The idea is that just because someone can’t afford to work with us, doesn’t mean they shouldn’t. As a company, just like any other, we need lots of things to operate as well as share with each other and enjoy. Do you offer services, products or even decent burgers that you can swap? Why can’t it be a simple trade… We think it can, so if you have something you want to share with us and think it would make a good swap for our time and skills, then get in touch. At the end of the day, you don’t get if you don’t ask. 

Overall, it was really easy to make the ‘Sing it to me’ idea come to fruition and our experience of using Fiverr was great to be honest (we normally use upwork). Implementing it all on the website was also fairly easy; I used an mp3 playing plugin and added it to custom CSS to tell the plugin to use my play and pause icons. Job done.

Our Tech stack

Fiverr – Talent 

GarageBand for Mac – Shorten one of the tracks 

Compact WordPress Audio/Music Player Plugin – Play it on the website 

Adobe XD – Make the ‘Sing this text’ play/pause icons

Custom CSS code used 

.sc_player_container1 .myButton_play {

    background: transparent url( – -insert-image-url- -) no-repeat !important;

    cursor: pointer !important;

    width: 110px !important;

    height: 40px !important;

    border: none !important;

    position: relative;

    margin: 0 !important;

    padding: 0 !important;

}

.sc_player_container1 .myButton_stop {

    background: transparent url( – -insert-image-url- -) no-repeat !important;

    cursor: pointer !important;

    width: 110px !important;

    height: 40px !important;

    border: none !important;

    position: relative;

    margin: 0 !important;

    padding: 0 !important;

}

The Talent

EJay – https://www.fiverr.com/ejayrookmusic

Tasos – https://www.fiverr.com/tasos_lazaris

Janani – https://www.fiverr.com/janani_madan

Berzan – https://www.fiverr.com/berzanonen


Prsnrs (Bristol, UK Based) – New band no link yet, will add when can.

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