Companies in need of a new label campaign may lack the in-house expertise and experience to design a brand by themselves. This is why many businesses turn to freelance graphic designers to create brand signatures, logos and other materials for labels.
"If you want to stand out, you can't have just a logo anymore — you need to become a brand," explains Bianca Male of Business Insider. "An eye-catching, message-sending, innovative brand. Enter the freelance graphic designer, who can transform your company's product, message, and mantra into one cohesive visual design that will, hopefully, make you more memorable and appealing to your audience."
Here are some tips to keep in mind when selecting a designer to work with:
Look for someone who "gets" your brand. Graphic design is a major investment that establishes signatures for every aspect of your brand, from its social media presence to its custom label strategy. Therefore, meeting with someone and getting an idea of how well his or her vision matches yours can prevent wasting money. You can ask for drafts or sketches on spec before investing in a full brand rollout. If the designer misses the mark repeatedly or fails to evoke the right ideas in a label, move on.
Don't expect a designer to build your brand. If your business needs an experienced brand strategist, look for one to hire. But don't heap your entire identity creation onto a graphic designer, whose role should be visually articulating ideas you've already refined. A designer might provide valuable input to discussions about direction, aesthetic and audience, but giving him or her too much creative liberty could result in a finished product that's strayed from your identity.
Avoid hefty up-front fees. Business leaders can overcommit themselves to a relationship that isn't destined to work out. Be skeptical of any long-term contract or onboarding fees on the front end. It's one thing if designers bill you for their time, but track the expenses carefully and look out for red flags. Also, define a clear cancelation window so that the partnership can be terminated at will. Generally, keep the relationship as light as you're comfortable with and give designers the chance to prove themselves before you ramp up production.
Keep everything. During negotiation and contracting, be very clear that any material drafted or finished for your company is your sole property. When the relationship has ended, collect all remnants of the creative process like computer files, sketches and other materials. This is a good way to ensure your ideas don't end up on a competitor's label or anywhere else in the consumer marketplace. An experienced graphic designer should have a standing policy to address concerns like these.
Find someone who's done labels before. "Make sure that the designer has experience in the medium that you plan to use — a designer who has a lot of great web experience won't necessarily be good at designing packaging for a print project," suggests Business Insider. Some designs don't translate well between mediums, so look for someone who's familiar with your marketing method.
By following these tips, companies with an industrial label printer can craft memorable and unique labels for their products. Contact us today to learn more about our lines of color label printers and how they can help your business make a bold statement.