What You’re Paying For When You Hire A Professional Designer
Over my past 26 years of graphic design work, one of the biggest issues I've encountered with clients is your resistant to outsource design. Why? Because it’s something you feel that you can do yourself. But, just because you can do something, does not mean you should. For multiple reasons, but I’ll save that for another blog post.
Another factor that may be preventing you from hiring a professional designer is the cost. You may be thinking, “why should I pay her/him $XXX per hour to do this when I can make it look pretty nice in my paint program or Publisher?” And that seems like a valid argument. But the end result is what really needs to be considered. Just because you can make your project look “pretty nice” on your own doesn’t mean that it’s going to produce the results you want.
There is more to design than just how something looks. You want your project to accomplish a goal. And there are many underlying factors (besides how it looks aesthetically) that comprise a successful design. That’s where a professional designer makes all the difference. We know how to make that secret sauce!
So, here are some important things to consider when wondering just what you’re paying for when you hire a professional designer.
Education & Training
Everyone knows that education is not cheap! You’re paying for a professional, who (likely) invested four or more years into earning a design degree. (Not all designers have degrees in design.) Plus, the best designers usually continue to invest in their education through on-going advanced training to keep up-to-date on the most modern techniques and practices, or to expand their knowledge into other areas that can benefit their clients such as copy writing and/or social media marketing. All of which come with price tags. But professionals know that they must continue to invest in themselves and their knowledge in order to invest in their businesses and provide the very best services for their clients. By taking that leap and investing in a professional designer, you also are making a smart investment in your business!
Tools of the trade – Every type of business has certain requirements. Professional designers must invest in professional equipment and software to get jobs done right. Just like professional cameras take higher quality photos than your cell phone, professional design software has more capabilities than Canva or Microsoft Publisher. It’s usually necessary to buy faster computers, external file storage, drawing tablets, scanners, printers, art supplies, etc. Subscriptions to vector artwork and photography websites may also be necessary.
Attention to Detail
Designers are crazy obsessed with details. That’s our job! Things like RGB or CMYK, JPG or PNG, bleeds, crop marks, leading, tracking, negative space, serif vs. sans-serif – They all have a huge impact on the design results. We know what colors to use to convey a certain message or evoke a desired emotion. We know what types and how many fonts to use in a certain project. And we know how to use other design elements like lines, shapes, textures, and space (the kind that leads your eyes and/or gives your eyes a much needed rest). We are skilled in combining all these elements to create a design that not only looks good, but does the job it was designed to do. Much of this links back to education and training, but a lot is just pure talent and an eye for design.
There is a lot to be said for experience and seasoned skills. When we graduated and began to call ourselves graphic designers, we had high hopes. And then we started to learn all the things that they didn’t teach us in college – like how to deal with clients, how to run a business, how to deal with rejection, how to stay motivated, how to use the skills that we’d learned. All those “extras” had to be learned the hard way – through good old-fashioned life experience. When you hire a well experienced designer with seasoned skills you get the whole package.
And YES, it is worth it! (I heard you asking yourself).
Ready to hire a professional designer? Let’s do this!
Still not quite ready? I’d still love to help!
that outlines all the important “ingredients” needed to help you create better designs – If you must DIY.
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