Starting the design process of branding your business or launching a new campaign is without a doubt a very exciting and empowering event. If you’ve just linked up with a designer, or are getting ready to find a designer, these are our top 7 DO’s and DON’Ts that will save you both precious time and heartache:

DO research your competitors.
Two advantages to this are: You can identify what makes you different from them, and you can make sure that you visually set yourself apart from them. This will also help the designer make a bigger splash with your identity and bring a unique, fresh look to your brand and services.

DO create a mood board.
You can use services such as Pinterest.com and TheMatboard.com to start getting inspired with colors, personalities, styles, and textures you like. Being involved in the design process is really important to your designer. This is your company, and we’d like to be able to say this was a team effort.

DON’T try and design it yourself.
It will look like it. Both you and your customers deserve a professional brand experience which is done with experienced, skillful, and analytical designers who combine key aspects in making a successful visual communication. Our job is to make you look great, and it’s by no accident.

DO make a list of keywords.
Your company should represent a small handful of words, and these words should be the focal point of your daily operations. These words will help keep you and your designer focused, as well as guide the visual design and language of your brand. Ideally, 3-5 powerful words should sum up what your mission is.

DON’T post your design options on social media for people to “vote” on.
This is not a bidding war, and designing a brand is an intimate process that should solve a specific criterion for your company. Social media is fun and tempting, but it isn’t the professional environment that you need to receive feedback without the valuable background on your precious brand.

DON’T rush to make a decision.
Sometimes we spend so many hours designing and collaborating that it’s really hard not to jump to the option you like best when it is presented by your designer and say: “go!”. However, I always tell clients: “Sleep on it,” because it’s likely this will be a big decision and you’ll want to give your gut feeling a confirmation.

DO trust your designer.
We’ve spent more hours than we care to mention on studying visual psychology, as well as the latest technology trends and facts that affect the designs we are creating for you. Our goal is to educate and inspire you throughout the design process, and we appreciate the trust you give us when we make recommendations.

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And this goes without mention, that being honest goes a long way during this process. Being honest with both yourself about the project, timelines, budgets, and expectations, as well as with feedback to your designer. This is the visual foundation of your business, and there’s nothing worse than finding out in the final stages of the design plan that you’ve been holding back on some defining feedback. Early communication, and continuous communication, are at the heart of our process in order to ensure a happy outcome for everyone.