One of the first things that people think of when they hear a company’s name is its logo and the images associated with it. These are distinct identifiers that act as the face of the company. In the absence of a well-designed face, any business might suffer from being pathetically unremarkable or, worse, utterly forgettable. If businesses wish to thrive, they must focus on producing the best visual content for their customers.
You may think that design is just part of the finishing touches of a business strategy, but in reality, its importance should be placed a lot higher than that. Good designs can be overlooked at worst, but bad designs may turn people off forever. A cheap-look
ing design will make your potential customers think that you are fine with haphazard outputs, an impression that you certainly don’t want if you are trying to earn their attention and respect.
Are Designs Strategic?
Successful companies know right from the start that designs are an integral part of a solid business plan. This is what sets them apart from those who put off design elements until the last minute. If your company designs are carefully thought of, no one has to revise and pull out existing ones that have resulted in poor customer engagement and product sales.
In order to utilize designs in a more strategic manner, it is recommended to take note of the following factors:
How are designs currently used in your business’ internal processes (e.g. decks, presentations, memos, reports, brochures, posters, etc.)?
What is your company’s existing design process? How involved is the management with the final outputs? Are you working with expert graphic designers?
Are designs featured in your business meetings and documents?
Are your designs in line with the needs and preferences of your current customers? Do your designs enable you to get the attention of potential customers?
Improve Customer Experience
Good designs are more likely to convince people that your products and services are worth looking into. A good design strategy, on the other hand, can help you retain your old customers and penetrate into a new customer base.
Striking visuals that are consistent with your company’s theme can keep your loyal customers interested and intrigue people who haven’t bought into your brand yet. Whether it’s your promotional materials, products, websites, or social media accounts, a good design can certainly put you multiple steps ahead of your competitors. If there is any marketing strategy that can pull in any customer at first glance, investing in design is the way to go.
Additionally, designs alone can be enough to create a desirable customer experience. If you were a customer, would you be willing to give your time and money to a company that couldn’t care less about the design of their marketing materials? Even if you had no other choice, you probably would still think twice about that. After all, you don’t want to be associated with a brand that ignores the importance of having a trustworthy image.
Establish Branding and Credibility
Design goes way beyond looks and representations. It’s also about being true to the company’s roots and core values, as well as securing its credibility to customers. It often starts with asking why people prefer your products or services over the competition. What exactly do you have that others don’t? From there, it then becomes easier to create designs that are faithful to your company’s purpose.
Here are some questions that you should consider before you translate your branding into various kinds of visuals:
- Who would your brand be if they were a person?
- How would you describe your brand in three words?
- What are the unique selling points of your brand?
- What is your brand’s “personality”? Would you like to be known as “straitlaced and serious” or “laid-back and cool”?
- What can you do better than your competitors?
The designs don’t even have to be intricate to be memorable. Sometimes, sleek and minimalist designs can be enough to stand out. No matter what design route you choose to take, the key is to create visuals that express what you stand for without having to use words. For peak effectiveness, it has to get your point across before people get to the meat of your content.
According to Adobe’s report, 46% of their respondents said that they wouldn’t purchase anything from a brand that has a poorly designed website. On top of that, 50% said that they make judgments based on a brand’s design choices. Hence, if you want to stand a chance, especially in a competitive field, you must be able to engage your target customers in a way that showcases your credibility.
This is why elements like logos, color schemes, font choices, photo choices, and illustration styles are important. For example, if you are creating a poster for a sports event, action shots and strong fonts are preferable. On the other hand, a muted color scheme with a specific drawing style may work better for event brochures.
Acquire Potential Customers
When it comes to establishing connections, one of the best ways to ensure that it lasts is to make a very good first impression. If you were trying to secure a deal with a potential business partner, you have a higher chance of making the cut if you are able to linger in their minds long after you’ve parted ways. In such scenarios, the power of great graphic design becomes more obvious.
Properly-designed promotional materials are essential tools in expanding your business because these contain information that a potential customer needs to know about your brand. They also show that you’ve taken the time to ensure that these information get relayed to the right people in the best way possible. Once you have them ready, you just have to see to it that your customers and business partners get it at the right moment.
If you want to make sure that you promotional materials will get you the results that you want, here are some things that you should take note of:
Your look must stay consistent across the board, whether it involves your internal business affairs or your customer-driven content. Critical design elements such as logos, fonts, and color schemes must be present in all official content. If you are going to experiment, make sure that none of the elements look out of place.
KISS (Keep It Short and Sweet)
When it comes to flyers and brochures, remember that you are not writing an essay or a book report. Thus, its contents must be kept short and straight to the point. You must assume that people’s attention spans are so short, so that you can strategize how to get your message across with just a few lines.
While contact details must obviously appear on your business cards, they are also worth including on your other promotional materials. You might miss a lot of potential sales just because interested customers couldn’t find a way to reach you. Make it easy for them to seal the deal by including details such as your contact number, website, and links to social media accounts.
Make Convincing Presentations
Sales and customer satisfaction are not the only benefits of good graphic design. It also makes business processes a lot more efficient. Aside from enhancing the look of your products or services, it can make any information a lot more understandable. This is because good designs are able to use space and fonts such that the critical details are rightly emphasized.
It can also significantly improve the quality of your pitch decks. See, interesting concepts are better appreciated when they are presented in a visually appealing manner. That way, it is a lot easier to convince colleagues and potential investors that you are offering a superb deal. If you want to make an impact, your presentation has to look as great as your ideas. It can actually mean the difference between getting a huge paycheck and coming home with nothing.
This is not just about superficiality. Yes, at the end of the day, it’s all about good content, but if you can’t put in the effort to present it nicely, it will not stick with your audience the way you want to. If you really want to be heard, you might as well go all in and show something that they would love even before knowing what you have to say.
Foster Employee Unity
Since designs reflect the company’s goals, principles, and core values, it can give employees a sense of unity and brand identity. The more that they are able to identify with the brand they’re working for, the more that they can work in sync with the rest of their colleagues and superiors. Hence, good branding and design can help promote smoother workflow.
It also encourages everyone in the company to be more professional. If the designs you use in the workplace can remind everyone of the company’s purpose, then they will be more inclined to do their jobs to the best of their ability. This collective identity will help your business flourish because everyone becomes a team player who is keen on meeting your targets. While designs can convince customers of your company’s credibility, it can also have the same effect on your employees. As a result, they are also more likely to continue working for you.
Meaningful Information Sharing
Some data and information are best served as visuals, especially when they are part of an important business report. Yes, explaining your findings in words is still mandatory, but incorporating good graphic design into your report can clarify what you’re saying in an instant. For example, if you are reporting about sales within a specific time period, a well-made graph can make it easy to compare monthly performance. Additionally, a good infographic can show critical information in a more meaningful way.
Right now, you can probably think of a lot of information that you want to share with people with whom you wish to build solid relationships. After all, it is only natural to show potential investors and applicants that you are the one worth choosing out of all the others. However, if you fail to connect with them, you’d likely lose your chance, even if your stats say that you are supposedly the best choice.
Using graphic design is not only applicable to presentations and proposals, though. You can also use it on annual reports, new product how-to guides, or survey infographics that can be shared on your blog and social media accounts.
Enhance Customer Engagement
These days, one of the most convenient ways to reach your customers is through social media. This is because most people now have smartphones that have ready access to the Internet. The problem is, most of your competitors are also on social media, trying to make their mark on the same audience. With all the information available for their consumption, how can you guarantee that your posts will stay afloat and relevant?
The answer: you have to go more visual. While plain text can clearly convey your message, incorporating images can boost your customer engagement. People on their smartphones would rather just look or watch than read a huge block of good content. In fact, about 40% of people are more likely to respond to your posts if it included well-crafted promotional materials and images.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you can get away with bad content just because you have enticing visuals. You still have to make sure that your designs and texts are consistent with your overall theme. Ultimately, graphic design is a valuable weapon in the world of business––it’s up to you to use it wisely.
Putting thought into graphic design can help your business gain attention by creating a desirable customer experience, establishing your branding and credibility, and attracting potential customers. It can also help you make presentations a lot more convincing, foster unity among employees, share data and information in a more meaningful way, and improve customer engagement.