Be part of the process
We all employ professionals to do the things that we can’t do ourselves. If we choose well, we can trust them and leave them to practice their craft.
It’s rare that to be invited to collaborate with a professional in order to get the best results. If a surgeon asked for my opinion on how best to remove my appendix, I’d run like hell.
But design is different. The projects we create are a reflection of our clients, and the more involved they are in the creative process, the more connected they will feel to the end results.
You might not see yourself as a creative person, but you have a really valuable opinion. And as long as you trust your designer to use your opinions in the right way, it will lead to better work.
You may admire beautiful cars, furniture or interiors for example. Forming a collection of these is easy, as it’s driven by what you see and what you like. Explore topics that aren’t directly related to your brand, but which you’re drawn to. Colours, shapes, quotes and materials can all be useful to help you articulate what inspires you, and what you aspire your brand to be. We may not use your ideas in a literal sense, but they will inform our thinking and strengthen the results.
Online tools can help you collate and present your thoughts and ideas. Moodboards are a great place to start – try Pinterest or Fancy, both of which allow you to discover, collate and share inspiration online.
Get involved and collaborate in the design process and allow yourself the freedom to ask what might seem like stupid questions (hint: there are no stupid questions). Advertising agency Wieden + Kennedy have a sign in their London reception that says “WALK IN STUPID EVERY MORNING”.
Good design begins with research before the pen hits the page, and your involvement can help inform that research and shape the outcome. It will ensure that you have a shared vision of how your brand is moving forward. Your designer can respond, ask questions, find links, challenge you and get you thinking emotionally about your brand. The ultimate result will be a stronger, clearer and more compelling brand. You will have played a part in the process and that will give you a sense of ownership and pride.
The clients that we enjoy working with most are passionate and involved, they engage in the process from the start and they are open to (and excited by) new thinking.
Your input is invaluable and your opinion matters. No one knows your brand better than you, so don’t be afraid, get involved and enjoy the process. Soon others will be adding your brand to their moodboards as part of their own creative path.
“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” – Socrates
Links and Further Reading