How to brief a graphic designer for your printed materials

Many businesses do not either have the skills or time to design all their printed materials in-house. This means that they will be outsourcing design work to a graphic designer.

Giving your graphic designer a good brief and understanding the terms of service are crucial to a timely, high quality and good value delivery of designs, meaning that your printed materials will be delivered quicker.

Most graphic designers will require an initial brief and then will work to a clear format of sending over initial suggestions, then narrowing it down to a final design in stages followed by a set number of minor adjustments. Any more changes, or any more stages to the process will not only be time consuming, but will also cost you money.

The more information that you give to your graphic designer in the first stages the better the outcome will be. He or she will need to know all about your business, such as where you are positioned in the market, your company voice, your existing branding, your new message and the purpose of your materials. If you can find examples of material that you either love or hate this will also be a great help.

Once you have received the initial sketches, constructive feedback is imperative. Decide what you like and why and what you don’t like and why.

As important as it is to brief your designer it is just as important to listen to what they have to say. For example, you may want to combine elements from two different designs, however, your designer may have a valid reason why this may not work. If you have chosen a talented graphic designer for your printed materials then listening to their opinion will result in a much better design. This is why you have hired the professional.

Once your designer has produced the final design for you, try and amend it as little as possible and to give all the amends to your designer in one go. Attempting to make little tweaks here and there as and when you think of them will soon see the integrity of the design diminishing.

Provided you have chosen a good designer and delivered a good brief and communicated clearly along the way you will end up with very high quality printed materials.