The Design Index Value (DIV), a study performed by the Design Management Institute, shows that design centric companies consistently outperformed the S&P 500 by 219% in the last 10 years. We can see that the most innovative and successful companies in the world share something in common: they use design as an integrative resource to innovate more efficiently and successfully.
Despite this study, most businesses don’t invest in design, mostly because the value of design is hard to measure and understand, and it is not seen as a business strategy. The DIV helps us to demonstrate that design provides a significant financial advantage for businesses today.
No matter what the size of a business, we usually see that design work being undervalued and left behind, especially in business branding. Plus, with so many DIY software and website platforms offering this kind of service, many people take the design development on their hands or leave the job for someone from the team, or a friend, or a family member. Sometimes you get a reasonably good result to start with and launch your business, but a lot of times, you are doing more damage than good to your business, unfortunately.
There are many benefits of engaging a professional to develop your brand, here we have listed the most important ones:
1. Build your brand identity
We talked about the difference between Branding and Identity on a previous post. They are two different concepts but strongly linked together, when your Identity is well designed and planned it will make your Branding easily memorable and noticeable, and your audience will learn to interact and recognise it anywhere they see it: from your printed materials to your online presence. This might be seen as a shallow concept of just “looking good and pretty”, but your Brand is more than how it looks like, it is how it’s perceived by others, what you say about yourself, and most importantly is how you deliver communications and results. Building a strong Brand is achieved by providing the best experience for your customers.
“Despite the evidence most businesses don’t invest in design, mostly because the value of design is hard to measure and understand, and it is not seen as a business strategy.”
2. Make a strong impression
Any business, in any field, has to face the challenges of a strong competition, here is where it is so important to stand out and get noticed. There are many ways to do this, and good design plays a crucial role in the game. Your goal is to get your target audience attention at a first glance, and then keep them engaged. This can be achieved by being creative/different, or colourful, or minimal, etc, there are many designs styles and approaches you can use, and a professional designer will know how to find the right one for you.
3. Great design deliver your message
Good design makes you stand out, great design provoke actions and it can help convert your audience into customers. Design is not just making things looks good, it not just about pretty pictures and typography, it has to deliver your message in the simplest way, and it has to persuade your audience to take actions like: buy something, make contact, book an appointment, etc.
4. Not just looking good but creating value
Design is more than creative concepts, design it is how things work and interact with your audience. This interaction provides a message, delivers information, gives instructions, educates a client about your product or service, etc. When done right, great design translates into great content and that’s what today’s audiences want and need; in a world where everything is available instantly you have to make sure your message attracts and captivates.
5. Inspire customer trust
Trust is gain with time, absolutely… but in a world full of instant competition first impressions are very important. As it happens with people, a well presented and “groomed” presence will inspire confidence, self-care, attention to detail, professionalism; it’s true that after that first image you have to actually deliver what you promised, that’s part of the further branding experience, but with a well presented brand you are telling your potential customer that you care, you put your effort in doing things right, and they can trust you.
Conclusion – Professional Design is a business investment
Developing a professional brand and incorporate good design brings many benefits to your business, no matter the size. It might seem like a big expense when you are starting in business, but in the long run, it will provide value to your marketing and communications, and it will create a solid base to your business brand to grow.
There is a huge range of prices in the market for Graphic Design services, and finding the right person to work with is a topic for another post… but your designer should not only work for you, he/she must work alongside you to truly understand your values and your message. We like to say that we are not just a “service provider” but we become part of our client’s team for the time we work with them helping with their brand and website needs. This is how we deliver a final result that makes our clients and ourselves feels proud of.
Having a clear process set up and using the right tools, helps so much to keep the ball rolling smoothly in any project. Of course, communication and a good relationship with the client are also vital to ensure we are creating a website we are both proud of. With the years I have found that every client is unique and every project might need different timelines or final objectives, but the overall process is basically the same for everyone, and knowing this process well makes the whole process flow nice and smoothly, and that’s great for everyone.
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