At first glance, the site seems pretty straightforward….plain, even. There’s no funky graphical header or image rotator. There’s no long section of “follow me here”, or “tweet me there” calls to action. There’s not even a whole lot of text.
The genius in Peter’s idea is not in his ability to leverage social platforms to maximize the engagement of users and the authenticity of the experience and yadda yadda blah blah blah. (Thank goodness!)
Nope. What Peter does is way simpler, and WAY more effective. He solves a problem that each and every one of us have on a daily basis – what to make for dinner tonight.
DailyDinner.tv does one simple thing and does it well. Every day, at around 11am EST, the site posts a new, delicious recipe, that can be made with simple ingredients, simple kitchen tools, and in around 30 minutes. Peter tells me that his recipes are generally “an amalgam of several recipes to add flavour or reduce time, and some classics that everyone does the same.”
On the home page you’ll see the day’s recipe, with ingredients listed and either a high quality photo or a video. The photo and video thumbnail are the only images on the page, and that’s exactly how it should be. I want to see the yummy, not some fancy flashy graphics that mean nothing. I see the photo and I want to make it. It’s that simple.
I can sign up to receive the recipes by email, or I can subscribe to get them in my Reader. I can login and favourite recipes, or view an alphabetical list of previous recipes (which in this case is better than a searchable archive because it’s more practical and taste bud tantalizing to scroll though a delicious list!).
Here’s the point.
Every day I talk to people who are afraid to get started on the Web. They don’t have the time, or the technical/design chops. In fact, you don’t need any of those things. You just need to have an idea that solves a problem, and solves it well. Peter Childs is solving a fundamental problem, and doing it in a practical way – you don’t have to be a gourmet chef to follow his recipes. His recipes have only a few criteria – they have to be delicious, nutritious, quick and easy, and satisfying.
Perhaps we need to take a page from DailyDinner.tv’s book. Forget the fancy gizmos. Forget the latest trends. Build a site that is based on passion (I know Peter is passionate about food!) and the willingness to help peoples’ lives be better, and you’ll have a winner every time.
[photo credit: Peter Childs, DailyDinner.tv]