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Christian Design Services...

The simple
of integrity, dependability
and creativity.

The Design Process: First Steps and the Client


Graphic design is a process, contrary to the chaotic images you may have seen in an art department at deadline. It all starts with your client's need for a website, logo, brochure, etc. In order to meet that need you must follow certain steps.


Step 1 - Get to know your client

First of all get to know your client's products and services. What type of image they are trying to project? Elegant, corporate, youthful, innovative, retro? What is their image now? Do they want to change that? One way to determine this is by asking them to describe their product or services in just one word.

Second get to know the industry. A little research goes a long way. Who is their direct competition? Are they targeting the same audience as the competition or searching out new avenues of revenue?

Don't forget to ask them what they don't want and why. Ultimately this knowledge will save you time and money while making for a better design in the long run.


Step 2 - Targeting the audience and distribution

Now that you know how to express your client's image, let's focus on who will be seeing the design and how it will be used.

The first question you need to ask yourself (and your client) is: What type of audience will you be primarily focusing on? Will it be a specific age group or gender? Maybe they want to target all ages, genders, etc. Is this for a specific industry or clientele or for the general public?

The second question is: How will this piece be used and what are you trying to achieve with it? For example, if your client needs a new or updated website how will it be used? Will it function as a point-of-sale website? Maybe they want to convey more information to their customers than was allocated in a brochure or mailer. Will the site need daily or monthly updates?


Step 3 - Convey the message

Your client has a message that they are trying to communicate to their audience. They may know exactly what it is, or waiting for you to tell them what it is. By now you should have a pretty good idea what it is. If they haven't clearly expressed this to you, just ask them! Have them tell you what they want customers to think when their company is mentioned.


Step 4 - Deadline

When does your client need the project completed by? Is there a show or conference date they are trying to make? How much time will be needed for printing and mailing? A design that looks great but isn't on time is useless to your client.


In Conclusion

Knowing what your client wants and doesn't want, what message they are trying to get across and who is their audience is key to you delivering a great design. A design you can be proud of and the one your client envisioned all along.


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