Expertise & Experience
- Education: While a graphic design degree is not a must it sure is an added bonus. Some type of education is definitely necessary though; whether it is studying under an experienced branding designer or taking classes through a local college or even online. Training and education give opportunities for designers to learn the fundamentals of strong design, what works, what doesn’t work, to gain invaluable feedback on their own creative work and to hone their skills (before getting their hands on your very important project.)
- Experience: What experience does your designer have? The benefit of an experienced designer is a fluidity in the way they work and creatively produce. An experienced designer has created and put into place systems and processes that enable the best end result. While a designer who has less experience may achieve the same end result (a strong, powerful new brand!) the process getting to that end result may be a bit more arduous as the experienced designer has simply had more time to work out all those kinks.
Testimonials & Portfolio
- Testimonials: You can learn a lot about a designer by the types of clients they have previously worked with. What do previous clients say about the designer, the work, the end result, the process? If testimonials are not posted, simply ask for a list of previous clients during your inquiry and send them a message. This is a normal request and one that you should feel free to make before investing in such a major project with both your finances and your time.
- Portfolio: Is there a portfolio available on their website? Is the portfolio extensive (more than a handful of projects)? Does the portfolio display a range of details that are included within the project so you can see examples of what is included in the branding package? Is there a range of ability and general design application.
Style, Aesthetic & Being a Good Fit
- Style & Aesthetic: Does the designer’s approach to branding fit your style and aesthetic? Does his/her general style and aesthetic resonate with you? Do you generally like the work they produce?
- A Good Fit: Are there opportunities in the designer’s process to get to know one another before committing to an entire branding project? Together you will be creating the foundation for your business. Branding is not just about a logo but instead a set of carefully executed decisions that makeup the entirety of your clients’ experience; so, ensuring that the designer is a good fit (the one who will be assisting you in making all of those decisions) is absolutely necessary. Do the two of you connect easily? Is it relatively easy to communicate with him/her? Do you feel heard, understood and valued?
This is for certain not an exhaustive list but it is a great place to start when choosing a branding a designer.