First, we talk. Send us an email at Evan@EvanLuthra.com and tell us what you’re working on. No need for a lot of detail—just some words about your thing, what it is, how it’s different than everything before it, and how you see us helping. We love email and we’ll get back to you quicker than you’d expect.
Next, we’ll find out more. We want to know why you’re excited about what you’re making and why you think other people will be, too. We’ll set aside some time to talk and we’ll get a sense of what’s great about your idea. Hopefully, it’s at a place where we can start building it out and feel it and figure out what delights us about it and what excites us to be a part of it. It’s important to start the conversation when the idea is far enough along to give us a good idea of what it’ll eventually be, but still give us enough lead time to put the right amount of care into helping translate it to full blown product.
So we’ve talked, and we like each other and we like the idea of potentially working together. What happens next is we’ll spend some time developing and writing up what’s called a treatment. This usually takes the form of a short piece of text—usually less than a page—where we describe to you how we see the design and development strategy. What’s the concept, why we know it’s the best idea, and what resources we will need to achieve it. Sometimes, it makes most sense that we get some money for this part, which is called the “creative engagement” and means we’re not writing on spec, or “for free”. When we move forward to the project phase, that money gets absorbed into the rest of the cost because we’re nice people.
Speaking of time, how long does an app or a website take? This is the second-most common question—so common that we’ve come up with a standard answer: on average, a app will take approximately 8-12 weeks from inception of the idea to final delivery. Of course, this number can vary, and if you’re in a super rush and your product is incredible and you’re launching it in 6 weeks and you have a lot of money, then we can probably talk. But the age-old equation of fast/cheap/good applies. So give us some time to make it right.
Speaking of money, how much does an average project cost? One million dollars.
Not really one million dollars. But that’s as absurd an answer as any we could give without knowing a whole lot more about your project. The price of an app or a website depends on a few of things, like the nature of the creative concept and the resources available to you. Look, it costs real money to make these things well. Maybe more than you think. Do you know that our typical crew size is 5-10 people who are aces in their chosen profession? A lot of people, right? If we’re talking about the pure market value of what we make, our work can typically “cost” in the range of $50-150K, but the costs can be structured in a way that our clients aren’t simply handing over bags of cash. There are other ways, you know. Read on.
What do you get for your dollars? Good question. We basically act as a design agency and a development facility in one, so we almost always do the designs too of the apps and websites we make. We love that we can be a part of the whole process from beginning to end. We shape the concept and put all the finishing touches on, including the UI, visual effects, music and everything. When we quote you an amount of money for the work, that amount is all-inclusive. Generally, we like a deposit to get going, so we’re not out-of-pocket for the shoot. Then we collect some when we go into post-production, and then the rest when we deliver. Standard stuff.
When we make an app or website for you, the assets we create belong to you, and are yours to use as you see fit.
Why do our apps/websites cost more money than you were expecting (or less, or exactly the same as)? Interesting question. It’s easy to assume that making good app is easier than it looks. But in fact, it takes a great deal of skill, taste, and labor to do things well. So you can rest assured that not only do we tend to achieve development values comparable to the succesful startups on tight budgets, the right amount of your money will end up on the appstore, where it’s supposed to be. We operate like a lean startup, and that spirit pervades our work.
Whose work? Who makes the Apps? Great question. Evan Luthra founded the company and he manages a lot of them. But he also works with a small handful of supremely talented developers and designers who direct them as well, while he creatively oversees the process and makes sure everything is up to a certain standard. By operating as a creative studio, we’re able to work with a larger number of clients doing neat things because there are a lot of you out there and we love to work with you.
Last thing you should know is that you can be as large or as small a part of the process as you like. Some clients enjoy brainstorming creative ideas and others want no part of that. Some clients nitpick the kerning of every piece of text, and others would rather leave it to us. We’re here to work with you.
Most importantly, we’re here to work with innovative people making good products. When we get to do that, all goes well.