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Working with a Graphic Designer

Working With A Graphic Designer

Your small business is growing and you are starting to make decisions that free up your time to focus on the parts of your business that you love, you know, the things that made you start the business in the first place.

Whether for a single item, a number of projects or a long term contract, these tips can help you to get the most from working with a graphic designer and contribute to a successful outcome, plus make the whole process a lot smoother.

Collaborate
Graphic design is a collaboration between the client and the designer. The design process and the whole project will be completed faster and more efficiently with mutual understanding and good communication. When meeting a designer for the first time, be ready to:

Explain your Business
Be prepared to talk about your business – your whole business, from the company culture to long term goals and especially the audience or target market. A good graphic designer should ask lots of questions, to really understand where you are in planning, marketing and the goals for the company and the project. But, you should be able to explain your business without a prompt and that will significantly improve your results!

Details, Details, Details
Next, talk about all the details on the project itself. What are your ideas, suggestions and thoughts, plus all the information about the project, product or service. If there is a team working on the project it helps to get input from everyone involved right from the start.

Know What You Like
Lastly, find and share examples with the designer – some visuals you like as well as some you don’t… three to five samples of each and don’t limit the samples to your particular industry or business. The samples are visual clues that help the designer determine where to start. It also is very helpful if you can be specific in why you like something or not.

And this is just the first meeting. Every designer from graphics to interior to landscape has their own way to interact with a customer, but the more information available at the start of a project, the faster the final product can be ready to go. And that saves you time, frustration and money.

Communication is Key!

To effectively communicate with your graphic designer be sure you are ‘speaking the same language.’ Ask questions, establish a reasonable time-line and be willing to learn a little about the elements of design (link), If you do not understand something that the designer says, be sure to get clarification. Be specific when talking about the details of the project. Vocabulary varies from industry to industry as do acronyms, so be sure to learn the lingo to understand your designer.

In “8 Best Tips for Working With Graphic Designers, by Ian Mills [ (6 10 2014) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ian-mills/8-best-tips-for-worki_b_5473608.html] Mr Mills says “Design is a subjective process and there is no set-in-stone “right-way” to go about it. But it is a collaborative process and understanding that process, having realistic expectations, patience and excellent communication will go a long way towards a successful outcome.”

Speak up! Share your thoughts – let’s open the dialog.
Designers, what would you add?
Business owners what kind of information would be helpful?