Do Graphic Designers Scare You?

I’ve seen all kinds of attempts from small business entrepreneurs to take their control back from a “scary,” distant” and “highfalutin” designer or design firm. Even if a business owner comes to the point of finally acknowledging their need for design in their business, they still feel so very out of control when it comes to these artsy fartsy, egocentric designer types.

How do you put yourself back in control?

One way is by educating yourself about what an experience with a graphic designer should be like. When you understand that, you will naturally make better choices when you need a design professional. Here are the four phases you can expect to go through when working with a graphic designer or design firm:

1. Denial

“Who do you think I am? Nike? Well, I’m not, so I don’t need a brand.” To be honest, some at the early stages of their start-up really don’t need a brand. Not yet, anyway. However, others have gone far beyond the point where they needed a brand professional and suffered the loss.

So, how do you know when is the right time to design, develop and build your brand?

For starters you need to know that you are doing it already. From the moment the concept of your business was born in your mind your brand began to build. Now, you might ask yourself: How similar do I look when compared with my competition? Do I compete on price more than I like? How often are high-profile prospects overlooking me? The answers to these questions may surprise you.

2. Acquiescence

“Okay, fine, I concede that my brand could look better, and I admit that I’m not taken very seriously in markets I would like to enter. I am starting to see there may be a real return on this investment.”

This is where you may be tempted to give up hope. DON’T!

You’ve made the right decision to invest in yourself and your business. Many entrepreneurs who reach this point are about to ‘see value in their business that they had not previously considered, and the transformation is night and day.’ Keep on this path, and don’t give up.

3. Delight

When you open a sample of your new art from your designer and the first thing you say after your eyes pop out of your head is, “Wow!”, then you’ve found the right designer.

How does a trusted graphic designer create the “Wow!” effect? By listening to your voice. Yes, it’s that simple.

How keen is your designer’s ability to translate what they learn about you into your message to your audience? What is their motive in creating your designs? Are they more interested in winning your clients and prospects than they are in winning a reward in a design contest?