We hear the story all the time: “I was working with a talented graphic designer, but they just couldn’t give me the look I wanted.” It’s definitely a reoccurring problem for many clients. Here’s the good news: If you are working with a talented designer, chances are, they CAN give you the look you want. Getting good creative work is often simply a matter of better communication. Here are some tips on how to work with creatives.
Show us the stuff you like and don’t like.
Shooting in the dark is really tricky for a creative. There are so many different looks out there, that if you don’t provide a point of reference to get us started, we may go off running in the wrong direction. Before sitting down with a creative professional, take the time to select samples of work you like… and work you don’t like. Both will give the creative professional valuable insight about your personal tastes and style. If you are a Pinterest type, create a mood board to establish the overall look and feel you are going for.
Tell us what you REALLY think.
Many times, clients working with creative professionals are afraid that if they don’t like the first draft, it will hurt someone’s feelings to say so. Here’s the truth of the matter: You not liking a design won’t hurt anyone’s feelings. If a creative professional is pitching you a design, it’s with the understanding that they like it, but they know that it is possible that you may not. What’s more important is that you arrive at something you BOTH like. A good creative professional will open the door for clear communication. That said, if you aren’t liking the work your creative is giving you, try saying something along these lines: “This is all really great, but I’m not sure it fits the spirit of what I am trying to communicate.” Saying something like this will help you get a good conversation started.
If you don’t know what you want, be prepared to go through a few different designs.
Sometimes, clients do walk into our office and can honestly say, “I have no idea what I want.” It definitely makes the job a bit trickier, because the creative work could go a million different ways. Remember that when you walk into a creative’s office and say those words, you are giving them free rein to run wild on your project. That said, be prepared for the fact that the first few iterations might not be what you ultimately use. When someone doesn’t know what style they are going after, it is up to the creative professional to discover that style for themselves… and that can take some trial and error… and that’s okay! The most important thing in this type of situation is to give open, honest feedback that will help the creative give you the look you like for your business.
Watch out for design divas.
Just because someone is a talented creative professional doesn’t mean they are always right. There are definitely design divas out there, and they can really hurt your brand and your wallet. Design divas might say something like, “Trust me, I’m a visual person, so I know what’s best for your business better than you would.” Remember that working with a creative is more of a collaboration than anything. You know your business, and the creative knows theirs. Combining those two knowledge-bases will result in greatness… as long as you have strong communications. Do you need help with your next creative job? We can definitely help.