A good design brief plays a pivotal role in creating an effective custom logo design. However, there is a feast of business owners/marketers who really understand its very important. But designers understand very well that a design brief is the first vital step towards making a meaningful and impactful design. Unfortunately, some designers presume about their client’s requirements — their target audience, the nature of business, etc. instead of asking their clients. As a result, logo designs created on assumptions end up unsuccessful.
So, the best way is to write the design brief first before you begin designing a logo or any design. Then, ask your client as many questions as you think essential to create a striking custom logo design. It’s because creating a logo design without having a design brief is very much like developing a township without having a blueprint.
What is a design brief?
A design brief is nothing but a document written before the actual design work begins. It’s unquestionably the first step that a professional designer takes to make a unique design. Unfortunately, creating a great logo design brief isn’t so easy-peasy, especially for those who haven’t done it before. It’s advised to spend a considerable amount of time creating a design brief and rework it. Your design brief must be in an easy-to-understand language, compact enough to preserve interest, and at the same time comprehensive enough to define every aspect clearly, precisely. A typically written design brief includes:
- An overview of the business
- The objective of the design
- The target audience
- Project-specific information
- Critical information about the competitors
- Design project budget
A brilliantly written design brief helps designers think logically about the design solution. It must include the latest design trends, measurement of success, timeline, and many other things. While writing a design brief, focus on the business objectives and outcome instead of the aesthetic details. While your client will tell you what they exactly want to gain from the design, you’ll be responsible for exploring ideas.
So pay heed to the client’s perspective while creating a design brief. The questions below will surely help you get ideas about how your client wants their designs to look. Also, it would give your clients a sense of association throughout the entire design process.
Given below are the top 12 questions that you should ask your clients before starting design. They’ll help you create a great design brief.
12 questions you should ask your clients before you kick off a custom logo design:
- What is the name of your company? This is unquestionably the first question any designer would ask their client before discussing any design project and writing a design brief. It is because the company’s name will be a crucial aspect based on which you’ll decide what to present on the proposed logo design. If it’s a custom logo design, you may consider the name itself as the logo. You can see many companies using their names in the logos. Knowing the length of the company’s name will help you determine the type of logo you need to design.
- Would you please let me know about your company? This is probably the second most crucial question every professional designer asks their clients. As a designer, it becomes imperative for you to know what your client does, along with other things. It helps you conceptualize a compelling logo design. Just anticipating your client’s business and start working on the design project would be your biggest mistake as there would always be a chance of misinformation. So open up and ask your client directly what they do, their background, who all their competitors are, etc. Since you’d be working on building a brand personality, you should include your client’s brand persona on a personal level.
- What inspired you to get this design created? Ask the client about the inspiration that drove them to get this logo design created. This question will certainly help you understand the job and why the client is interested in working with you. This will also get you to know how to begin the design project.
- What is your mission? Knowing your client’s purpose is essential. Ask their business core driving force and include those elements into the logo design. By doing this, you’ll be giving respect to your client’s beliefs while making space in their heart. The logo design may carry various perspectives, such as political, cultural, etc., but you must ensure that the logo design meets the client’s core values. A great design brief must include the client’s USPs (unique selling points) for gaining some design ideas and inspirations.
- What do you like or dislike about your previous branding? It’s of utmost importance to know what the client doesn’t like or dislike in the earlier version of the logo. You should peep through their previous logo design to plan your design strategy more effectively. Going back to their last logos will enable you to understand what worked and what didn’t.
- Who are your key competitors? Unless you don’t analyze the rivals that your clients compete with, most probably, you won’t be able to strategize your logo design precisely. So before you kick off your logo design project or any other graphics, you should study your client’s competitors in their niche markets.
You need to identify what worked for them and what didn’t. Once you’ve enough data about your competitors, you’ll be able to mold the design for better results.
- What group of clients /markets are you targeting? What do you want your design to do? Definitely, you wouldn’t be concerned about the client’s appeasement only. A great custom logo design should be created keeping in view the target audience. It must draw your client’s target audience. That’s why you should ask your clients who their potential audiences are. What is their age group, profession, etc.? This is valuable information for creating a compelling logo design.
For example, if your client deals in products for kids, the logo design must be bright and colorful. Also, you can go for some comic icons/images in your logo design to draw children’s attention.
Note it down, people’s choices largely vary on age group, profession, age, and culture. So, pay heed to these aspects while creating a design: a custom logo design, brochure design, business card design, or any other design. So it’s always advised to carefully choose every design element, such as color, fonts, shapes, typography, style, etc.
- Is there any concern related to culture? While you’ll focus on attracting your clients through the logo, you should also see if the design would hurt a particular community’s sentiments. So, ask your client if there’s any cultural concern with their audience. It’s also essential to know as a disputed design can create legal trouble.
- What style of design do you like me to create? The design style is an important aspect that you should know before starting the project. Consider that your client has a good understanding of the design and then ask to know their choice of the logo design aesthetics. Some of the questions that you can ask are — do you like a simple, clean, and balanced look or a unique, experimental one? Do you like to include isometric illustrations?
Write down their answers—they’ll help you narrow down the client’s choice of design.
- Is there any specific element that you want to include in your logo design? Your clients may want something to be in their logos. Ask to know, and include them in the logo, and check if they’re appealing. This would give your client a perception that you pay utmost care to the tiniest detail.
- What kind of budget could I expect to work with your design project? Knowing your client’s budget early on will help you move your design project forward. Instead of coming off as a money-minded person, you should begin the discourse with some open-ended questions. This will help you understand what your clients have in their minds for the project.
Once you’ve got an idea about your client’s budget for their custom logo design project, check if it matches your rates. Also, make it clear whether you will charge for each revision or not. It is also imperative for you to know the file format in which your client wants the design. This will help you anticipate what type of license is needed for that particular design asset.
- What designs do you like or dislike? This question will help you know your client’s design taste, around which you’ll work. Your clients may not necessarily be familiar with the terminologies used in the design industry, but you can effortlessly understand their choices.
Understanding clients’ minds and winning their hearts is a tricky affair. You need to be patient and a little witty to get your questions answered. We’re sure that these questions will help you write a great design brief. Keep in mind that your clients not only like you to create impressive logo designs but also expect you to deliver pieces of valuable, professional advice. Every client wants their designer to listen to them cautiously and address their concerns. No matter whether their questions are irrelevant or worthless, they want satisfactory answers.