The “Value” Of Graphic Design – What Does It Mean Anyway?!?

I wanted to talk about the value of graphic design. However, in my conversations with other business professionals and/or potential clients, it seems more important then ever to discuss the meaning of graphic design first. In an age of immediate gratification where social media tools push out information continuously, messages are there and then gone, overtaken by the next message or article, then the next… It’s a continuous roller coaster of information that has no end. How do you tell others your story? How do you announce or sell your services or products or persuade someone of your value? And how do you do it with impact? Is it more then just a tweet?


Hartman Design Studio Branding Example

If it’s seen visually – whether it be a brand or simple business logo, a magazine ad, or brochure of services, a poster, a direct mail piece, a product catalogue, a billboard, a menu, or even your avatar – then you’re using a form of visual communication called graphic design.

Graphic design is part of your daily life. It’s the newspaper you read (even the digital version), it’s the billboards you see on the way to work, it’s the signs that direct you into the parkade, the menu at the coffee shop and the cup you receive your coffee in, the gum wrapper you open after that coffee… the website you surf at lunch to order that new pair of fabulous shoes… the list can go on forever. The fact is, it’s everywhere and helps you navigate your life in a multitude of ways.


Keiser International Product Catalogue Example


Harder Lee Photography Brand and Stationery Example
So the value is obvious. It’s a visual tool to communicate. And we as humans do that a million times a day – ok maybe a million is an exaggeration but a lot! The next question then is how does it communicate. Is it a positive feel good message, is it an emotional engagement or is it simply informative? Or on the flip side, does it cause anxiety, is it confusing or misleading? This is answered in the quality of message. Good design should solve the problem – get the message out – in a clear way. Does it successfully sell your business or service? Does it tell your story? Do your clients or potential new clients see your value, the value of your product or service?

Ok that’s a lot of questions but thats a good start. Question your own value proposition. What is it that sets you apart? Why should someone hire you or buy from you? Or simply want to interact with you in a positive way?

Your visual message is as important as the written message itself. So communicate it in a way that makes sense. This is where a good graphic designer comes into play. And I say good because with any business or service, you should do your homework. Hire someone with experience, who has a reputation for putting out quality work that results in good value for the client. Value equals success.
I’m not talking about cheap when I say value. This isn’t the fast food drive-through design suggestion. Best-cost solutions bring thoughtful solutions that make sense. Ok maybe this is a whole other article.

Back to my main point. Graphic design is important to us in every part of our lives and quality graphic design isinvaluable. You take your accountant seriously don’t you? They help you with sound financial direction. Well take your designer as seriously. They’ll help you bring your message to the marketplace with sound visual direction. You still have to do the work but do it with all the right tools!