I cannot agree more with Sheryl’s advice about a designer asking questions and how she takes the time to speak with her clients. This is why I encourage my prospective clients to take advantage of my free telephone consultation — it helps me “feel” what the person is looking for, who they are, the “culture” of their business, and how they want to speak to their audience.
If you pay $50 for a logo, you get a $50 logo. I mean there’s no way that anybody who’s got any skill set whatsoever is going to spend 20+ hours for you for a very small fee. What you get when you hire a professional designer, like myself, I’ll spend any number of hours to get it right. I’ll do the research. I will take the time to speak to the client to get an idea of what they like and what they don’t like. What you end up with is something that everybody is happy with.
When you go to these platforms where you’re either bidding on jobs and you are bidding against someone in another country, you lose. You have lost the ability to actually speak to the designer one-on-one.
I come from the school in terms of design that less is more. Just because you can throw a million different things into a logo doesn’t mean you should and it also doesn’t mean that you necessarily need to have a ‘logo.’ Sometimes a nice typographic solution is all you need. Design, like anything else, is about having good sense. If you have a sensibility for color and white space and know that cluttering things up is always going to look terrible, that’s a start. Just look at the ads in the back of newspapers. They’re meant to pack as much stuff in as possible with no breathing space. Does anybody really read those ads? Probably not.
Be able to explain what it is you do, and see if the designer gets it. If the designer is not asking questions, then they are not really listening.
The same thing goes for business cards. If you put every possible thing that you do and might do on your business cards, why does anybody even have to call you? You want to make people want to go to your website and you want to make people trust that you know what you’re doing. You do that by having a professional looking card. The same thing goes for your logo design. I spent a lot of time learning how to be a designer and that’s why you would hire me, because I’m a professional.
Before hiring a designer, do your research. Go online and check out a number of designers, look at the work that they’ve done. See if there’s something that speaks to you, that you like their style. There are a million different styles of design and designers who design different things all over the place. Go and research it out and then come prepared with questions when you want to talk to your designer. Know what it is you’re looking for, be able to explain what it is you do, and listen to see if the designer gets it. If the designer is not asking questions, then they are not really listening. You want to know that they are taking you very seriously.
If you have a company that your name doesn’t say what it is you do, then the designer would be the one person who might say to you, ‘maybe you need a tagline.’ You need something that will let someone know what it is you do and have some sort of a memory about it. Something as simple as a tagline and a descriptive phrase would do that. I think that asking those questions of the designer will help you kind of get a sense as to whether you want to do business with them.
~ Republished from School for StartUps.
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My thoughts: Yes!! I have to admit I’ve said the same thing to clients about cluttered ads and business cards. Often the simplest, cleanest solutions, both in design and writing, are the most difficult, because you have to capture the essence of the subject, with a minimum of fuss and a distillation of expression. However, the client’s word is final, and sometimes a designer has no choice but to design something that works as well as possible.
As for finding a designer, every business, and every business person, has their own vision, and their own style of communication. The same goes for designers, so like any other relationship, there is a designer for everyone. Some are the ones you want if you have pinpointed your graphic needs and can serve up what you already have in mind. Others are more intuitive and can help you along with your vision. I cannot agree more with Sheryl’s advice about a designer asking questions and how she takes the time to speak with her clients. This is why I encourage my prospective clients to take advantage of my free telephone consultation — it helps me “feel” what the person is looking for, who they are, the “culture” of their business, and how they want to speak to their audience. Whether by phone or online communication, be sure your designer is listening to you!