Guest Author: Mollie Coons
Graphic Designers are perhaps one of the most important pieces to beginning or sustaining a small business. Hiring a good Graphic Designer to aide in branding your business presents additional expenditures in both money and time but will be the legs your business stands on for its entire life.
When you hear branding, you might instantly think logo and business cards. Branding is much, much more than just those things. A good Graphic Designer will assign your small business a visual identity that can be applied to any variety of mediums from a logo and website, to a style of writing or what color tie to wear when presenting to a board of investors.
I like to refer to visual identity as visual identification: how will someone pick YOU out of a crowd? A trained Graphic Designer will assist you in developing your visual identification. He or she will talk with you, not to you, share knowledge with you and brainstorm strategies with you to help you decide what will be best for your business. Consistent visual identification is the first step to building your reputation as a brand. Remember….
Consistency = Trust
Some key branding things to keep consistent are your logo, business card, letterhead, Facebook page, Twitter background and marketing materials. You’re probably wondering, “what’s the catch here?” The computer screen is only one area to check for consistency…here are a few others.
: the Digital world
: the Printed world
The digital world consists of HOW you use your logo and things like company colors. Is your logo always in the upper left corner of things or the upper right corner? Is your logo roughly the same size on your letterhead as it is on your envelope? Are all your company colors the same on your customers’ computer screens? These are all things a trained graphic designer will check and double check for consistency.
The printed world consists of HOW your logo and company colors look printed on paper. Is your company’s shade of green the same on your envelope as it is on your business card? I can guarantee if your envelopes are printed at a different place than your business cards the greens (for example) will be a drastically different shades. It’s because greens, yellows and oranges are the most difficult colors to print consistently. And remember…
Consistency = Trust
A great Graphic Designer will constantly scan all these areas, and more for brand consistency. He or she will make sure all of your business’s visual identification is consistent…giving YOU strong legs to launch your small business empire from.
You might be overwhelmed by all of this but don’t be. While there are many things to think about when it comes to branding your business, a graphic designer will take you through the steps and help transform your business into a professional, attractive company with a competitive edge. I would like you to imagine for a moment how freeing it would be for you to not have to worry about these things! It’s nice, isn’t it.
When starting to work with Gerald F. Crysler, owner of Crysler Encapsulated Sealing Systems and a colleague of mine, Megan Hughes of http://www.keenbeandesign.com (Graphic Designers often work in collaborative packs to provide the best branding and design possible) we began by simply starting a conversation with Jerry…asking him what he was passionate about and why he wanted to start his own company. From there we started designing his logo and gave him a sheet of 5-10 different ideas to choose from. After he chose a concept he felt represented his company well, we began to refine it and work it, much like clay, into the first foundational brand pillar of his small business, Crysler Encapsulated Sealing Systems .
Stay tuned for The Digital World Continued: Why you NEED a website
About the Guest Author: Mollie Coons is a freelance communications graphic designer based out of Burlington, VT. She holds a BA in graphic design from Champlain College. She is also a featured graphic designer for the company Keen Bean Design. She works with various companies from different industries in developing their brand through print and web mediums. For more information about graphic design or to hire Mollie to help design your home service business visit her website here.