Are you a DIY Designer?
Some people like to have a go at designing a logo, website or promotional brochure for their own business. Two of the most common reasons why are…
They are creative and feel confident enough to give it a go themselves
They are a start up or small business and want to save as much money as possible
I'm not here to judge! As there is nothing wrong with giving it a go yourself, and to be honest I get a kick out of doing DIY projects myself… For example, this weekend we (my better half and I), replaced the shock absorbers on our '97 Mitsubishi Mirage, probably saving ourselves $200-$300. Unfortunately on the same day my '95 Suzuki Sierra decided to play up and started running like a pig… Maybe because I was paying too much attention to the Mitzy'.
Now the issue with the Suzi' could be a number of things, so rather than wasting time trying to diagnose a problem with the limited knowledge and tools that I have, I will book it in with a professional mechanic. And even though cashflow is still a little tight, I am better off working on my business or my client's work, rather than wasting time messing around with my car.
Do it yourself and getting it right!
Unlike a DIY mechanic where not getting it right could result in a breakdown or put you in a dangerous situation! A DIY designer faces other challenges, for example, a potential problem is you could upset a competitor if your branding looks similar to theirs, and they may even consider you are infringing on their IP (intellectual property) then take legal action. Please note this ever happening is rare but should still be considered especially with logo or brand design. Other than this, a poorly designed logo, website or promotional brochure may not leave the best impression with your potential customers.
So what can you do about it if you're still not ready to engage a professional designer? There are a few things you can do to help you get it right.
For logo and branding design
Research your competitors' branding (local and international) and avoid doing anything similar
Consider where you will be using your logo ie, stationery, signage, uniforms ie, embroidery etc
Avoid using clip-art as part of your logo design
Keep it simple… (Use 1-2 fonts and 1-3 colours)
Record the RGB and CMYK values used in your logo for other marketing material
Do a few different concepts and poll your family and friends. Insist they be honest and ask for their input
For a website or promotional brochure design (Rinse and repeat)
Research your competitor's website and brochures (local and international)…
Have an engaging story (use a professional copy writer if you can afford to)
Use quality photographic images (use a professional photographer or a photo library)
Keep it simple… again (Use 1-2 fonts and 1-3 colours)
Use the RGB values (for web) or CMYK values (for print) from your logo for brand consistency
Present your design to family and friends for their honest critique
Hopefully after doing this you have achieved something not only be proud of, it will also instil confidence in your potential customers and they will engage you for your products and/or services.
On a final note: If you have designed your own logo and now want to have it professionally 'pimped' please get in touch with us for an obligation free quote. email firstname.lastname@example.org
The logo on the left was created by a 'back-packing' web designer - the logo on the right is the version we pimped!