Design brief - the critical factor for a successful project
The most important (I should rather say CRITICAL) factor, for your successful project, is the...design brief.
To get your project perfectly executed the first step to consider is the Design brief with your client.
This is the time to get all the necessary information about the client's needs. Don't forget - the brief should be pointed to the final results of the project, discussing mainly the business objective and not to the exquisite, elegant artworks - this is your (designer's) job. As a designer in your brief with the client, you need to understand what the client wants to achieve, what is the primary outcome of the project that the client would like to get as a final result.
With this brief, you will make sure the client will get a high-quality end product and the satisfaction from the complete project will work in your favor with the next clients.
1 - Make sure your client understands that you don't know anything about their company (even if you do). You need to get a fresh information about the main objective of the company, what is all about.
* What does the company do?
* A bit of history about the company
2 - What the client wants to achieve with the new design project - to increase the revenue or to increase the online presence and boost awareness for the company? What is the main object?
3 - Ask the client to provide with some promotional materials from the past they were using (if any).
4 - Ask the client if they want to revive their presence from scratch or just to update and refresh the already existing promotional material?
5 - How the client differs from the competitors?
6 - What is the lifestyle of the audience that the client wants to reach? (demographic, age, gender, employment, income, interests etc.)
7 - What kind of project the client need or in other words the specifications of the project - logo, poster, business card, printed or for web etc. (related to size)
8 - Who will supply the materials, like a copy, photos etc. If the client has an own copywriter, photographer or will require you to provide all this?
9 - Ask the client to give you an idea what they like from their competitors' designs?
10 - Ask the client what they don't want by all means to see in their end product. This will save you lot of unpredicted disappointments and will save you lot of time reviewing and redoing the artwork.
11 - Ask the client to provide you with their budget. You need to determine if the project will be worthwhile to work on and execute.
12 - What is the time schedule for project completion ? Try to make the client understand that a quality product can not be rushed. The idea behind the project should be carefully structured, so the client is able to communicate through the project with their audience.
AS a designer during executing a project do your researchers in your client's field, see how other similar project is done and always ask yourself why you like or dislike them? Don't limit yourself with only your vision and understandings about design. Remember - two brains could be more effective than one.
Based on the questions above you can create your own professional questionary for your clients. Always bear in mind that 95% of the clients will not come to you with their own brief. They don't understand design and you are the one to help them come to the right solution.
If you want to download the brief sample above and use it in your business you can DOWNLOAD IT HERE.