Proper care and feeding of a graphic designer are key to a successful relationship. Designers live in a different world than most of us; they see things we don’t. They are important marketing partners and their role is vital to your success.
With that in mind, here are a few dos and don’ts when working with a graphic designer.
DO provide examples of looks you like. Designers are visual. They want to be shown instead of just told. On a side note, while it’s good to have a vision when starting a project, be open to ideas the designer presents. He or she has no doubt produced something similar in the past and can provide direction from best-practices experience.
DON’T come in unprepared. Provide your designer with everything he or she needs before you get started. That might sound elementary but it isn’t. Designers have horror stories about doing and redoing a project because the client kept changing the copy, photos or specifications. Think of it this way: Would you rather pay someone to do the job once or three times?
DO learn a little of the lingo. Just like when you visit a foreign country, you don’t have to be 100 percent proficient in the native tongue but it helps to know the basics. Know the difference between a serif and sans-serif font? What are orphans and widows? RGB and CMYK? Familiar with the Pantone Matching System? If not, it’s time to do a little studying.
DON’T tell your designer you want him or her to “make something pretty.” Your graphic look is key to your business’ brand and a lot of thought goes into the design. Calling a brochure, large-format sign or e-newsletter “pretty” is a dismissal of all the efforts the graphic designer put into the work. Sure, you want your banner to look nice. But it also needs to be effective; that’s what will draw customers into your business.
DO provide feedback. Just like any professional, a designer needs to know how he or she is faring against expectations. It will improve your project and help the designer learn.
DON’T be vague when giving feedback. Saying “looks good” or “needs a little work” doesn’t give the person enough to go on. Why does the project look good? In what areas does it need work?
Whether you have a designer on staff or are using freelance talent, if you follow these tips, you’ll find the experience rewarding in foot traffic to your business and on your bottom line.
West Press’ talented staff is here to help you each step of the way — from graphic design to printing to mailing services to large format to website development. Contact West Press or your Account Executive at 520-624-4939 today.