Briefing a designer – How to get the “perfect” design

So you hired a designer to handle your marketing design needs. Your expectations are high, and your designer has dazzled you with their portfolio and understanding of your company. Now, just how will they create the perfect design for your projects?

Enter the design brief…

A design brief is (you guessed it) a brief outline of the project. This document will provide all of the information necessary to guide the designer with technical requirements, allow them to develop creative concepts, and of course provide the perfect design for your project.

So what goes into a design brief?

The following list includes the basics of a design brief. Be sure to provide enough information to allow the designer to develop an effective concept, but do not provide design solutions – that is what you hired the designer for. Offer information that will help the designer marry the look of the piece to the voice of the copy and be clear on what information is of key importance. Most importantly, ask your designer for any assistance you need in developing the final brief – that “perfect” design depends on it.

  1. Title of the project
  2. Delivery types
  3. Marketing objectives
  4. Final format for reproduction
  5. Budget and schedule
  6. Assets client provides to designer:
    existing photography, brand standards, copy, etc.
  7. Audience:
    demographics, psychographics and geographics
  8. Messaging objectives:
    call to action, headline treatments, body copy, visuals
  9. Competition reviews:
    provide examples of your competitors and include what you liked about these samples and point out flaws to avoid in your design. Feel free to include samples from outside of your industry / direct competitors.

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