Design Tips for the Non-Designer in All of Us

Paul Schetelich

Lead Designer

Without strong visuals, your brand won’t be the first thing that comes to mind when speaking about a particular product or service. Branding is not only critical when getting people to remember your company but also shaping their perception of what you have to offer. Design may be one part of the overall branding puzzle, but it’s an important one. That’s why even people who don’t have background or experience in design should still be aware of their company’s visual branding.

If you aren’t a savvy designer, don’t excuse yourself from the visual elements of your company. You should still play a role in small tasks such as editing images in Photoshop, resizing photos and having an opinion as to which images best represent your brand. Here are a few tips to get you started.

Get Familiar with Your Brand’s Style Guide

The best way to ensure consistency is by having everyone follow the guidelines in your company’s style guide. A style guide provides guidelines for your organization when it comes to the visual representation of your brand. It may outline which colors to use, which types of images are acceptable and which fonts are preferable. Style guides can be short or long, but the bottom line is that it clearly documents the best image guidelines for your brand.

Stop with the Stock

Stock images are free to use and easy to find, and there’s nothing wrong with implementing them into your content. However, always choose high-quality stock photos that relate to your brand. Too many companies choose photos that are inconsistent or low quality just to get something out there. Give yourself time to browse the Internet and find images that are professionally done and truly royalty free.

Collaborate with a Designer

If your budget doesn’t allow you to hire a full-time designer, that’s okay. You should still meet with one each month, each quarter or each year to get valuable feedback on the visual branding of your company. This way, you save money from not having to hire someone internally but still benefit from the professional expertise. Also, don’t be afraid to get educated yourself by taking a design course to brush up on the best practices for modern design.

Match Images to Your Content

Whether it’s a simple blog post or an extensive white paper, the images should always match the content. Think of the photo as an extension of the text. An image of a person will encourage readers to feel connected to your story or absorb information. The fact that you can add images throughout the text is also helpful in breaking up content and elaborating on certain points.

 

About the Author: Paul Schetelich

Since the days of sidewalk chalk and finger paints, Paul has been creatively crafting the art of design. With a B.A. in Graphic Design from Monmouth University and a Masters from the Califano School of Art - Paul quickly moved up the ranks at SEMGeeks from Junior Designer to the Lead Designer. With 4+ years of experience in web design Paul is ready to conquer the digital atmosphere.

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