There is a whole host of reasons you could like something. These reasons could change in seconds. You may like your cup of coffee, but the second it spills on your keyboard, you won’t like it anymore.
Liking is based on personal preference which can be fleeting. Good communication is based on clearly achieved goals, not personal preference. You might not like high-visibility yellow but if your goal is to be seen easily while riding your bike in the street, high-visibility yellow is a great choice because it is easily discernible from any background.
One of the most difficult challenges when discussing communications – especially visuals – is avoiding using the phrase “I like.” By avoiding using this phrase, you can train yourself to better identify how a communication might be serving the message and audience. If you stop “liking” your communications, they will get better.
Instead of discussing the communication in terms of “liking” or “disliking,” ask yourself this:
Does your communication reach your audience in a meaningful way?
This means you have to (1) have a clear message and (2) know and understand your audience and what they find meaningful.
Some phrases to use that will help you better critique your communications:
“This complements the message because…”
“This competes with the message because…”
“This speaks to our audience because…”
“This alienates our audience because…”
Using metrics tied to your message and audience to evaluate your communication will take personal preference out of the equation and facilitate problem solving and better communications… even if you don’t “like” them.