How To Write An Effective Design Brief
design brief is a written explanation - given to a designer - outlining the
objectives and milestones of a design project.
A thorough and articulate design brief is a critical part of the design
process. It helps
develop trust and understanding between the client
and designer - and serves as an
essential point of reference for both parties.
Above all, the design brief ensures that important design issues are considered
questioned before the
designer starts work.
This document outlines some of the most important factors to consider when
Start your design brief with a short, honest synopsis of your organization
or company. Don't take this information for granted, and don't assume that
the designer will necessarily know anything about your industry sector.
What does your organization do?
How long you have been established and how many staff you employ?
What is your market niche?
How you fit in to your industry sector?
Good design can have a huge influence on the success of a company's
marketing strategy - but in order for success to be ensured, clear goals must
What do you want to?
Gain newsletter subscribers?
Obtain information from your audience?
Encourage them to tell a friend?
If your aims and objectives are clear, then your design brief has already
achieved much of the project's scope. One of most rewarding parts of actually
sitting down and writing a design brief is that it helps to clarify your
thoughts and can indirectly help to find flaws in what you initially thought
was a solid idea.
Your Target Audience
primary, secondary and tertiary audiences. Explain if you are looking to consolidate
your existing client-base or appeal to new markets.
Detail any demographic figures about your audience that may be useful to the
designer. These may include:
Your Budget And Time-Scale
Even if you can only provide a ball-park figure, a budget
expectation will give the designer a good idea of the type of solution they
will realistically be able to provide.
Time scale is also an important consideration - so let your designer know if
there is a specific deadline that has to be met.
Providing examples of what you consider to be effective or relevant
design can be a great help in writing a design brief.
Make sure to include samples of your company's current marketing materials
- even if their only purpose is to explain what you don't
want from your new marketing materials!
If there is a design style that you particularly like or dislike - then explain
why in the brief. If you're not entirely sure why you like a certain design style, then good
starting points include:
Quantity and quality of text
The atmosphere that particular designs create
Don't feel that you have stick to the medium that you are designing for when
giving a list of inspiration and influences. If a television advert or music
video creates the atmosphere that you want your flyer to create, then that
is a perfectly reasonable statement to make in a design brief.
The more clues you give about your design tastes, the more likely the designer
will be able to produce something close to your aims. Expecting your designer
to second-guess what you require rarely produces the best results.
Remember that professional designers will not copy the ideas you send them...
but will use them as the start of the design process.
Will Write The Material Content
the content (verbiage) on your materials requires careful consideration.
It can either "make" or "break" the deal.
If you already have the content written, let us know. That can be a big time
saver on the project.
If you would like us to write the content, this will extent the amount of
time and price on your project. We will need reference material of existing
material to formulate excellent verbiage. We will also need a contact person
who will be able to answer any content questions on a moments notice.
Special Note: While your materials should be written in clear, concise
way - there is no reason why you cannot use emotive language to emphasize
exactly what you are trying to achieve.
Will Supply The Photography
allure people. They tell a story all alone.
If you already have the photography that you would like to use, let us know.
That can be a great time saver on the project. It is always desired to have
large size photos for the best quality and appearance, when working in photo
If you would like us to create custom photos and/or use stock photos, this
will extent the amount of time and price on the project.
We will need to schedule photos sessions, on-location, if needed.
Whether we use your photos or ours, photos can be "spruced up"
with special effects to create extremely alluring images. This can make all
the difference in the world as far as attraction. This can make a tremendous
difference in your professional look and presentation. This additional service
extends the amount of time and price on your project in addition to creating
We will also need a contact person who will be able to answer any photography
questions on a moments notice and schedule photography sessions
Consult with Colleagues
It is recommended that you consult with as many people within your
organization as possible before sending the design brief back to us. Showing
the design brief to different people may reveal remarkable differences in
the way people see your organizations aims and objectives.
Resolving any differences in your colleagues opinions will save considerable
time and expense further down the line.