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Rimidesigns Who Are You Designing For

Who Are You Designing For?

How to Keep Your Work Artistic Yet Client Driven

When working for a client, the first priority should be communicating the client’s message. When you put the message first, and then put it in an award-winning package, that’s when the art director is at thier peak. The way to achieve this can be tricky. The temptation to be avant-garde first and then see if you can somehow work in the messaging can be overwhelming, especially for a young designer.

Here are 3 principals for keeping your work artistic yet client driven. Following these principals can give you a better understanding of your work, the creative process and how it relates to and represents both you and your client.

1. Be a communicator first, a designer second

So many of us begin our creative advertising careers as art majors, and making the switch to advertising can be pretty seamless. But because what we do has so many artistic elements, it’s very easy to see ourselves as artists rather than communicators. And while sometimes you may have that client that just wants some “buzz”, most of the time you will be asked to convey a message to an audience.

Think about how to communicate this message in the most basic way possible first, and then add an artistic vision on top of the message. You may be surprised how much your work can improve by just starting with the message first.

2. The nature of business is compromise

Clients are usually never right and neither are art directors. What is “right” usually lies in the middle of the spectrum (give or take.)

Never take a client’s knowledge of their product or their audience for granted. However much more you know about design, they also know more about their product and audience. Always listen to what they want, and rather than being combative, think about how to blend ideas into something you both can be proud of.

Clients are a very underrated source for editing, and if you feel passionate about an idea, defend it by telling them what the benefits are. Clients are hardly ever out to play art director, so have a discussion about creative freely with an open mind and, as a result, you both will usually find common ground.

3. Responsibility of service

Responsibility of service means that, as an art director, your responsibility is to give your client and their product the best service possible. This means your primary goal is to get the message heard, as opposed to making the coolest creative you can. Remember, they have contracted you to perform a service for them. Don’t use them as a means for a great portfolio piece.

When you create a piece for a client, make sure you’re putting them first because they are paying you to put them first. It’s wonderful to make suggestions to them, and more often than not, they will agree with your suggestions. But they have a goal in mind for the piece you’re working on and you have to make sure that your work achieves that goal first and foremost.

SOURCE: HubSpot Developer Blog

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Who Are You Designing For?

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