There are opinionated clients, clients who aren’t really sure what they want, design savvy clients, and many other types of clients. Your job as a designer is to give all types of clients a finished design that is both functional and visually pleasing. Sometimes this is really easy, but other times working with a client is a challenge.
While it might be easy to feel frustrated because they may not agree with your design, looking at the situation from the client’s perspective might make the design process easier for both of you.
Your clients are going to be the ones you answer to when working on your design so, while they might not want to make you feel like you have to change your design, they might have to in order to do their own job well.
Before any designing even starts, you have to pitch an idea! This is how you can set the tone for the design process, and you can explain to your client what you want to do for them. The best way to make a good pitch presentation is to do your research; research the companies current designs and what the company represents. Instead of only looking at what you are designing, grab inspiration from different parts of the company. You can get facts from previous research, the success of that client’s competitors, and elsewhere. Presenting an idea is discusses further in this great video
Working together as a team with your client will also help to alleviate some stress throughout the design process. If the client is more involved in the design, then it will be more likely to turn out how they envisioned it. Instead of having a meeting in the beginning of the process, and then showing them the product when it’s all finished, it could be a great idea to have them more involved in the process right from the start! Keep them updated as you go, and then if they need one part changed you can do so before you get too far along. This isn’t always the best option for a project, but for some it definitely can be.
When you design for a client, your are also designing for that client’s demographics. It is likely that whomever you are designing for has a target audience or demographic, so being familiar with this will steer your design in the right direction. It might help to have your client create a mood board showing what their target market is interested in; everything from what they wear, what their hobbies are, purchases they make, and anything else that could point you in the right direction. Mood boards are a great tactic for figuring out how your product or design should look from indirect inspiration.
Designing for a client is a fun and rewarding process. Whether your design process only takes a couple weeks or a year, these tricks could help your process go smoothly!
Check out examples of how designs and collaborations have come together at www.michigancreative.com.