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Mythbusters: Design edition

Design shouldn’t be complicated. But at the same time, it’s also difficult to understand. Quite the paradox isn’t it.

A lot of people’s horror experience with shoddy design agencies has left a sour taste in their mouths. Just hearing the words “design agency” might trigger them, leading them to shout out words, predominantly starting with the letter “F”. We’ll let you guys work that one out for yourselves.

But fear not… we’re here to defend what we love and that’s design. Design isn’t a chore for us, it’s something our whole team has a passion for and we’re going to take this opportunity to breakdown some of the myths surrounding the world of design. Hopefully, after reading this, you’ll learn we’re not all monsters and we’re open for a coffee whenever you feel like it, just get in touch.

Myth #1:

Contrary to some people’s beliefs, but design work is not “free”. Design agencies like ourselves consist of multiple graphic designers, web developers, web designers, content creation specialists and photographers. Design agencies operate just like any other business, they have costs and employees that need to get paid and the list goes on…

We’ve said it numerous times, and the good majority of you guys out there already know this. Design is important. It’s what allows brands to show off what they’ve worked so hard towards. It allows you to stand out, capture peoples attention and help turn them into loyal customers. Whether it’s the branding you’ve got designed or flyers and leaflets. Design goes into every single aspect of your brand from head to toe and requires a thought process behind every single decision.

If there was ever a saying, synonymous with not only design but most things in life. It’s “You get what you pay for.” If you’re not willing to spend money on getting design and branding which looks good and does it’s intended job, don’t expect the same results.

Why do we use the colours we do in logos? Why do we choose certain shapes as secondary elements? All these decisions are made using market research into consumer behaviour and how they process colours, fonts, positioning, shapes, etc. So… whoever out there thinks we just click a random colour and stick it on a screen and therefore we should be giving out design work for little to nothing. We’re sorry to burst your bubble… but you’re way off the mark on this one.

Myth #2:

No. Designers cannot read your mind. Communication is key when it comes to producing high-quality design work. If you want a smooth process from a) Getting in touch with a design agency, to b) Getting your finished product, you need to be on the ball. What we mean by this is you need to be able to respond promptly, to review concepts, review revisions and approve designs.

So back to our point, if there’s something you’d like changed you need to let your designer know. Even though they have the skillset and talents to be able to create design work from scratch, they can’t approve designs themselves and give you a final product without running revisions and important things past you.

Myth #3:

“All I need is a logo, and I’m all set.” Yes and no. A logo is important, it’s one of the more important aspects of any brand, it’s what your potential customers see first, whether it is on a shelf or a website. However, a logo will have huge difficulty standing on its own two legs without strong branding and values behind it.

Branding allows you to bring everything together, combine your values, why your brand exists, logo, colours, typography and more all into one pot – we call this the branding pot. You can’t make a good dish with only one ingredient. The dish which is being made in this case is branding and a logo alone will only get you so far.

So what can I do? Any good brand needs to be easily recognisable. This can’t happen if you’re using different colours and different fonts based on how you’re feeling that day. Brands need to be consistent. When you look at an Amazon flyer, you know without even looking at the logo, who it’s from.

What you can and should do, is get a branding guide made. These help you and everyone else involved with your brand, easily understand what you have set out to achieve. It contains everything you need to move your brand forward with consistency.

Unsure on how to use your logo? Open your branding guide. Unsure on which font-weight you should be using? You guessed it, open your branding guide. Branding guides can even be shared with designers and printers, and they help remove the need to ask essential questions like what colour codes does your logo use? All this and more is accessible through one in-depth guide.

Myth #4:

We started our list with how some people think design work should cost little to nothing. So, it’s only fitting we end it with discussing the other elephant in the room and that’s how a lot of people have a misconception that design is expensive.

In the world of design, poor quality work is often labelled as a cheap option – no strings attached and shipped to you. But upon receiving what you paid for, you’re often left scratching your head. That freelancer across the globe who promised you design agency-level work for a tenth of the price, might not have been telling the truth all along…

We’re a design agency but we’re also an SME just like yourselves. We understand that it can be difficult to manage an in-house marketing team and juggle everyday business tasks. This will lead to you to compromising on one or the other and that’s not what you want. You want to allocate yourselves a marketing budget and use talented designers to your advantage. Do yourself a favour and get good design work done, which will help your brand move forward, build brand awareness and get your brand to where it needs to be and that’s an industry-leading position.

Remember “Design costs money but cheap design work ends up costing you more.”

If you or anyone you know requires design work, or just need to talk to us to help better understand what we can do for you. Get in touch via hello@theiirthcompany.com.

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