In this video, I’m sharing the top common mistakes people make when creating their visual models and how you can avoid them.

These tips are perfect for you if you’ve been thinking about creating your own visual models and want the process to be as smooth and as simple as possible.

Watch this video to find out my top tips to make sure you create the best visual models that represent you and your business.

Because I’m talking about visual models all the time, when I inspire people or people get excited and start creating their signature system, they’re doing the visual models and all that sort of stuff, they often will send to me their visual models that they’re very proud of, which they’ve done themselves.

It’s a double edged sword for me, because on the one hand I’m like oh, this is really exciting because they’re actually implementing, they’re doing stuff and I want you guys to be doing that. On the other hand though, if I’m very honest with them the quality of what they’re producing is not fabulous. Look, the thing is with creating visual models, it is a very fine art and I have been doing this stuff for about 18 years and so I’m still making new distinctions every week, every day. The more models I create, the more distinctions I’m making in how to make them better and better. Of course if you’re creating your very first model, it’s not going to compare with me making them over and over again, every day, every week.

Here are some hot tips for you on how to get those models to a higher standard from the get go. Of course, I say come and work with me and let’s do this together because I love this stuff. However, I know that’s not for everyone so if you want to do it yourself here are some hot tips.

Mistake #1: Stuffing everything into one model

One of the problems that I see is that people are trying to put all their information into one model. Make sure you go and watch my video on the four different models that there are that you need to create to create a signature system. If you’re trying to put everything in your head into one picture, that’s not going to work because you’re going to have a variety of different information going into one model and that’s going to be a bit of a dog’s breakfast.

Mistake #2: Wrong shape!

Another problem I see is that people will actually, they’ll use the wrong shape for the type of information that they’re conveying because they might decide oh my God, I love a rocket shape but actually what they’re conveying doesn’t fit, the metaphor doesn’t fit what they’re actually trying to convey in their messaging.

What I would say around that is that you need to choose a shape that the metaphor fits the information that you’re producing. Say for example you’re producing a step by step system and it’s a chronological order and the order matters, then you want to have a linear model. That might look like just arrows from left to right, one side to the other or sometimes you might have it top to bottom. Some people like doing vertical but really generally a step by step process chronological order really fits left to right arrows. I know it’s not that exciting and sexy but that is generally what’s going to work if it is a chronological order type model.

If it’s something where the order doesn’t matter and actually everything is equally important, then you want a model that’s going to show you that so you might have like a sphere, a circle and you’re going to have that divided into, if you’ve got six elements in there it’s going to be divided into six equal parts. That’s going to show your clients that actually all those six things are important and the order is not necessarily important. It’s not a chronological order thing. You just want to think about those things in the shapes that you’re choosing as well.

Mistake #3: Jamming too much information into one model

Another mistake that I see people making is that they’re actually trying to put too much information into your models. This happens when we’re trying to make the model explain everything. The idea of the model is we want it to be really, really simple and less is more so for each element within a model, one to three words max because the model isn’t necessarily designed to stand alone. You’re still going to speak to that model as the expert. You’re using this as a tool, not to replace you entirely. Don’t try and put a bunch of words on there, because it’s just going to look messy and you’re going to be then overwhelming the clients, which is the opposite of what we want to do with our visual models.

We want to simplify it and make it really clear and succinct.

Mistake #4: Not a graphic designer

Finally, I would say that the mistake that lots of people are making is that they’re not graphic designers and so they’re trying to do the job of a graphic designer without that skill and experience. Really, I would say even if you’re going to DIY the extraction of your information and the conceptualisation of your models, unless you’re a graphic designer don’t try and create the models yourself because it’s just not going to be a high quality end result for most people.

If we’re not graphic designers we’re not going to do a great job of it. The risk is there that you’re going to create something that doesn’t look fabulous, is not a great reflection on your brand and actually detracts rather than adds value and credibility to what you’re doing. Yes, those are the mistakes I see people making. Hopefully that will stop you from making them and I’d love to talk to you more about them. If you’ve got any questions, please pop them in the comments and let’s problem solve, let’s make you create the best possible models you can.

Let’s continue the conversation below.


renee-b&W webRenée Hasseldine works with coaches, experts & thought leaders to turn what is in their brilliant minds into powerful signature systems using visual models. Her knack for extracting and unpacking thoughts and turning them into unique intellectual property is sheer genius.

Renée is the author of the best-selling book ‘Share Your Passion’, she is the host of the ‘Leveraged and Loving It’ podcast and a panel member on The Business Playroom TV.


The 4 visual models that let you work less & convert more leads

Get instant access now plus regular tips for thought leaders

You have Successfully Subscribed!


The 4 visual models that let you work less & earn more

Get instant access now plus regular tips for thought leaders

You have Successfully Subscribed!



You have registered



You have registered!


Uncover your scalability strengths & weaknesses today

Get instant access now plus regular tips for thought leaders

You have Successfully Subscribed!