San Diego, CA (PRWEB) April 20, 2013
A monthly survey by the National Federation of Independent Business says that small business owners are feeling less optimistic about expanding their businesses or hiring new employees, as reported by Heesun Wee on CNBC. According to Bop Design, a San Diego web design agency, this suggests that small businesses may be looking more to freelancers or contractors for the marketing services they need, such as graphic design.
“Small to middle-market companies are often willing and able to produce their own marketing content,” says Jeremy Durant, Business Principal at Bop Design. “But few have the in-house expertise or resources to perform the graphical design function. When the need arises, they typically turn to a freelancer or a graphic design agency.”
Companies that have a need for outsourced graphic design services should keep the following tips in mind when looking to contract with a graphic designer:
1. Hire the right designer. Look for someone who has experience in whatever needs to be designed. For example, it wouldn’t make sense to hire someone who specializes in package or environmental design for a website redesign. In addition to skills and experience, look for compatibility. Whenever possible, the project manager should meet in person with the designer to get a sense of their personality and how they might work together.
2. Educate the designer about the business. Before getting into the specifics of the project, the designer needs some background on the company. This includes a succinct explanation of the company’s business model and/or unique value proposition, followed by an outline of the company’s marketing objectives, and a clear definition of the target audience. The more the designer understands the nature of the business, the better the end product will be.
3. Outline the primary communication objectives. Give the designer some basic guidelines about the look and feel of the project. Don’t worry about spelling out exactly what the design should look like. A good designer will have the talent to take a few rough ideas and come up with a professional design that represents the company in an appropriate manner. It helps to provide the designer with examples of other designs that reflect the desired look and feel—whether those designs belong to the company’s industry or not.
4. Set clear project objectives. As with any project, set clear goals for what needs to be accomplished. Discuss the project in depth with the designer, and get agreement on who is responsible for what, and by when. To keep things on track, set deadlines for each phase of the project, but build in some flexibility on the dates.
5. Stay in contact. One way to be surprised by the outcome (and not necessarily in a good way), is to hand the project off to the designer and then have no further contact until the final due date. To achieve a more optimal outcome, schedule review meetings for each phase of the project.
6. Give direct, professional feedback. During the review meetings, the project manager should give the designer honest, specific feedback regarding what they like and don’t like about the design. Giving vague feedback or none at all will cause the designer to have a harder time creating the right design for the company.
7. Trust their judgment. Finally, and this is the hard part for many, trust the designer’s educated, experienced judgment. Both sides may not agree on everything. But if the advisor strongly advises a certain way, they have a good reason for doing so.
“To get the best results, hire the right designer or agency, provide clear direction, and stay involved throughout the project,” adds Durant. “You’ll end up with a design that meets your approval and does an excellent job of supporting your brand.”
About Bop Design
Bop Design is a San Diego web design agency with offices also in the New York metro area. Bop expresses a business' values through branding, advertising, design and web design. Bop Design also helps attract a firm's ideal customer through search engine optimization and search engine marketing. The marketing firms' focus is on small businesses that want an external team of marketing specialists to help give their brand and edge in the marketplace.