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Tips for choosing the best graphic design company

April 3 2013

I have been fortunate enough to be involved in the graphic design industry for over 16 years and in that time I have come across many companies and businesses that have been incredibly unhappy with their current graphic design team. If you are unhappy with your graphic design agency and want to make a switch it is a lot easier than you think. We can pick up from where the other agency left off or start a completely new project. In any case I thought I would list a few reasons that you can tell if your relationship with your graphic designer is going pear shaped.

– My graphic designer never gets back to me. Every time I try to get in touch with them they are either away or in a meeting – they work just doesnt get done…it is really frustrating!
– The just don’t get my brief ( I hear this all the time). I try to explain what I want and the designs that they come back with are totally off brief and are nothing like I wanted.
– They keep charging me for every round of design amends. They quoted a fair price in the beginning for the design work, but each time I need to make a small change they hit me with a large fee, which is totally unfair.
– They won’t release the final artwork files. They are saying that the creative design work belongs to them, as well as all the intellectual property associated with the project.
-I keep on dealing with a junior designer who finds it hard to communicate with me. They just don’t have the kind of experience I a, looking for.

I hear all these horror stories on a daily basis and I keep on telling these people that the reason why they keep on running into these kind of issues with their graphic designer is that they did not choose the right designer from the beginning. Perhaps they may have been swayed by the price, perhaps even by the so-called graphic and creative experience they said they had or even better, it was a referral from a friend of a friend.

This is why you should really look at 3 very important key factors when deciding on a graphic design firm.

Rule # 1:
Make sure you look at references and call them. I know this is a rough thing to say, but try not to trust these companies at face value. Make a few phone calls and do your research. The time and effort you put into this now, will ( and I promise you this) pay dividends for you later on.

Rule # 2:
Go in and meet with studio manager. This is a good way to see the graphic designer you will be working with, rather than working in the virtual space. On top of this you can generally get a good vide about the potential future working relationship. For example if you are the kind of person that is quite conservative, ideally you want to be working with a more mature design company as opposed to a younger, city-fringe style operation. On the other hand, if you are a young start up company looking to work with a more edgier and creative design team then you should be perhaps looking for these types of alternative graphic designers. Basically, you have to be happy and comfortable with the decision you make as changing design companies mid project is not ideal and will only end up costing you more money and lost time.

Rule # 3:
Make sure that the graphic design company has the necessary resources to handle the work load. If you are looking to partner with them for the long haul and you have heaps of work to give them, make sure that they are able to handle this. Be upfront with them and outline how much work you intend to give them. If they seem like they are a one man operation then they might not be able to scale up quick enough to handle the work load.
In this case you should probably go with a larger design team where the work ca be spread around.

If you are reading this article and are thinking that you are unhappy with your current graphic designer and are perhaps looking for a change, then why not give us a call here at Hopping Mad Designs on 02 9360 8514.

We are more than happy to sit down with you and go over your future graphic design projects as well as take a good look at any designs that you may have that are just not ‘making the grade’. An hour chat with our creative director will put your mind at ease and get all your sales and marketing material back on track.