Graphic Design Archives -
Brand Identity, Marketing Collateral & Website Design
Therapeutic Journeys, LLC, a brand new company offering a wide range of hypnotherapy services is our latest client!
We started less than two weeks ago, with a logo and a website layout started by another developer that didn’t have the time to finish the project on schedule. The logo was good, but needed a different color scheme, so we prepared 4 different color options and settled on a rich blue-green.
Because the deadline was very tight, we worked quickly on the print marketing collateral, so it could go to print and be in the client’s hands in time for a speaking engagement. His marketing collateral included business cards, letterhead, envelopes and a gift certificate.
As soon as the print items were sent to the printer, we jumped into the website development. Their new website has been developed on a WordPress platform. It is responsive, which means it will automatically detect and display optimally on any device it’s viewed on… desktop, laptop, tablet or mobile phone. It’s also retina-ready for high definition devices.
They’ve got functionality to send email newsletters from their website. This particular function is far faster and easier than working with any of the off-site email marketing providers. They can literally drag and drop recent posts into their newsletter and be ready to send it to their subscribers in minutes!
We’re happy to say that the client has everything they need to start their new venture in style, and in only a week and a half. Good luck to you, Therapeutic Journeys, we look forward to watching you grow!
Here’s what the client had to say:
You have been amazing to work with. The quality and efficiency you’ve brought to this project have exceeded my every expectation.
Design is one of the most important considerations when you’re contemplating upgrades or an overhaul to your website or print materials. While there is no substitute for appropriate messaging, the design of your printed piece or your website is the first thing a user responds to. Design often determines whether a user engages in your message or abandons your website, deletes your email newsletter or tosses the brochure you spent a lot of money on. You have only a few seconds to grab someone’s attention, and you have to get it right.
“Graphics” generally refer to:
The overall layout.
Is the piece designed in such a way that it’s easy to navigate or read? Does it lead the viewer through a logical progression of the message at hand?
Color sends a powerful psychological message, and it’s important to understand how it will affect your users. What colors are most appropriate for what types of businesses? How does color influence perceptions of your business and actions by your prospects?
Illustrations, clip art, charts, icons, line art, etc.
The types of images that are created with a graphic design program or illustrated. Icons are a really effective way to communicate a message without taking up a lot of room on a page. To be most effective,icons need to be familiar and clearly indicate what they are meant to communicate! Think of a shopping cart icon on the top of an e-commerce website. You instinctively know that if you click on the shopping cart, you can complete your purchase. It’s familiar and it takes up a lot less room than a link that says “Complete your purchase here.”
The saying “a picture is worth a thousand words” could not be more true. Consider the following:
This is a photo I took while designing a website for a local bakery. If memory serves, they are cake balls dipped in chocolate. While there should definitely be a description to make these delights as tempting as possible, the first thing any viewer is going to see is the photo. The photo is going to determine whether someone reads the description, and no amount of text can possibly communicate the yummy-deliciousness like this photo can!
If you really want to engage your audience, use photos of people.
Photos of people draw us in and can create an emotional connection. While not appropriate for every design application, they can be used very effectively to help communicate who you are, and they can immediately form a bond with your audience if the subject is someone they can relate to in important way.
Used properly, graphic design can engage, influence and convert your audience into action.
Would you like to find out more about how effective graphic design can improve your brand image and your marketing materials? Call me at 614-507-0705, or send me an email. I’m always happy to answer questions and find ways to help improve your marketing program in many different ways.
By Karri Hill
By Karri Hill
On 04, Aug 2010 | In Graphic Design | By Karri Hill
Perhaps you’re getting ready to launch your brand new company, or maybe you’ve been in business a while and can finally afford to hire a designer. Whatever the situation, having a logo designed for your business can be exciting and daunting at the same time.
You want the coolest logo ever, but how do you decide what to include, and which one of the choices is right for your business?
When I design a logo, I consider the following things (among others):
1. Does the proposed logo strongly relate to your company, products, or services?
2. Does it convey the brand image of your company, product, or service in an accurate way?
3. How quickly and easily can it be interpreted by the viewer?
4. Especially with small companies on a budget, will it reproduce well in black & white for inexpensive printing without losing the idea?
5. How will it be used? Web, print, signage, billboards, vehicle signage, t-shirts, hats, etc…
6. Is it simple enough to convey what you do and your brand image quickly if it’s on a billboard or vehicle sign, viewed at 50 mph?
7. If it might be used on an embroidered shirt or hat, can it be reproduced in that medium easily…without killing your budget?
8. Will it detract from the medium it’s used in? Will it complement the message or overtake it?
Your designer came back with a dozen designs. Which one will you choose?
Shame on your designer for making your job so hard! You are suffering from choice overload. The process of elimination is important. Narrow it down to 2 or 3, and let the remaining ones lurk on your computer taskbar or print them out. Walk away. Several hours or a day later, look at them quickly, and see what you gravitate to immediately. Your consistent first impression is probably the best (your customers aren’t going to give it more thought than that).
Cheap Market Research:
Show your choices to others, and take only their very first impression. Email the two options to customers, post them on your Facebook page, take a vote. This will give you opinions and make your customers feel important and invested; you are engaging them, and this is always good!
Putting your favorites into a design mock may be very helpful.
What does it look like on a business card or on a web page? This can often lead to design considerations you may have overlooked! This will also lend perspective. Remember, your logo is important, but it’s only one part of the marketing materials you will use. Don’t let it get lost, but don’t let it take over and eclipse your message!
3 reasons to simplify your marketing designs.
I stood by my client as he proudly showed me the two-page spread he’d bought in the local yellow page directory, and cringed. He’d allowed the yellow page salesperson to turn the design and messaging over to their graphics department. He’d given them a laundry list of things to include, and they had dutifully followed his instructions. I was looking at the result: a very expensive, semi-permanent representation of his business that was so visually busy that it was impossible to find a core message.
It’s tempting. You buy space for an advertisement, you’re sending out a mailer; you want to get the most bang for your buck.
Your designer comes back with something that’s good, but you want more. It doesn’t tell the whole story of what you do, how well you do it, or why your customers should buy from you. You send the designer back to the drawing board to add more content. Maybe you send the designer back more than once. You’re happy when there isn’t a snippet of empty space waiting to be filled with a sales pitch, and sign the order.
Your results are less than stellar, and here is why:
- You confused your audience with so much information and so many sales pitches that they couldn’t make sense of it, or they felt pushed and tuned out all of your message.Solution: Sticking to ONE major message in an advertisement or marketing piece allows that message to shine. Instead of throwing in the ‘kitchen sink’ of reasons why your prospects should do business with you, give them one GREAT message, make it memorable, and back it up.
- Too many visuals. Remember the saying “a picture paints a thousand words?”Solution: Choose graphics carefully! They should engage your audience immediately, while providing a strong relationship to your written message. Chosen well, the thousand words don’t need to be included! Limit the number of graphics: use only one main graphic to reinforce your point, if possible. Additional graphics may include your logo and other visual cues that convey information instantly, such as the credit cards you accept, or BBB membership.
- You overdid the call to action. While many marketing pieces seem to forget that a call to action is essential, your piece is so full of them that your audience can’t decide what to do, or what to do first, and they abandon your message completely.Solution: DO have a call to action, but don’t expect your viewers to commit the next week of their lives deciding which action they need to take or which action they should do first. Assaulting viewers often leads to abandonment of the message entirely.
The old KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) method works best when you’re marketing, both visually and in copy.
Have a well-defined goal and stick to it.
Use your website to give the whole story, and make sure your marketing piece directs your audience there. Your website should be used to expand on your message, tell the rest of the story, and convert browsers into buyers. Use different marketing channels for the purpose that makes each most effective.