At least weekly, it seems I hear a horror story about a design project gone bad.
Often, the problem is the design client has been thinking backwards. They know they need a visual representation of their brand. But they haven’t yet articulated their unique positioning, zeroed in on their target audience or clarified their “voice”. They hire a designer in a vacuum—often choosing the cheapest option—and then wonder why their results suck.
How about a better way?
Start with a clear understanding of the brand you are promoting. This means everything from your story, to your target audiences, to the clear benefits (not features) of working with you. Do the work before you start a design conversation.
Don’t even think about hiring your kid. Or his buddy. Design that works is a powerful merging of art and technology. Would you hire an amateur to consult to your clients? Stick to those with demonstrated expertise and make sure they “get” you and your end goal.
Just any designer will not do. You need the right “feel”. Look at their work. Does it resonate with you? Will it fit with your target audience? Have they worked with someone in your industry or will their work easily translate? Someone with great fashion credentials is unlikely to be the right fit for most law firms.
Assemble a team. Too often, business owners expect their designer to comment on positioning and sometimes even edit copy. You don’t ask a lion to fish. Instead, I team writers and designers and technology experts. Everyone does what they love and you get design that works.
Maybe it’s time for your design to work. Hard.