For those unfamiliar with graphic design the thought of writing a brief for the talented wizards can seem a little daunting. But it should not be. Like drafting any other part of your marketing and communications plan it is about explanation.

And, that explanation should be broken down into similar steps to your marketing.

The first thing to include is your company profile. A short synopsis of what you do, including history and your clients or customers. This will help the graphic design team focus on the industry you operate in.

Perhaps the most important area in the brief will be the aims: what you and your company want to achieve with the design. Is it a complete re-brand, is it a new brand or is it for a campaign?

This will explain what you expect in terms of scope of the project and helps once consulting with the design team later on in the process.

Equally as importance is your company’s target audience. Young and funky, edgy people, a business-to-business campaign, or an older audience all will influence the design. This is time to consider carefully that audience. A short audit of your type of client may help clarify this.

The media format is something that you should also consider. A full suite of material could include stationery, leaflets, stands, website and other key elements. It could also be as simple as a leaflet and well-designed advertisement.

As you consider the breadth of what you want, do not forget social media. Whatever you want designed must have elements that work across multiple social platforms appropriate to your target audience.

At this stage it is important to include others in your team. They can provide valuable input, and help you revise the brief.

Of course, this is the hard part – money. You need to be clear about how much you have to spend on the design and the products it is to be used on. Be clear on this and be certain about the timescale that the project has to be delivered. Above all, remember that the cheapest option may not provide the quality you expect.

The life of the design brief does not end once you have appointed a designer. Before they start work meet with them and agree all of the above elements. An experienced graphic designer will be able to tweak the brief and help you work through what is exactly to be delivered. Chiho Tang, Owner of Oranga Creative said: “It’s great to meet with a client for coffee, to understand what they want, cause often the client can’t articulate what they actually want in just their brief alone and having a chat with them can fully allow us to understand their needs and be able to meet them with our designs.”

Also agree with the design team progress reporting, presenting of drafts and keep in contact – without pestering them. Let them get on with producing a design right for you.

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