Whether it’s a company business card, a letterhead, a poster, an ad in the paper, a web site, or any host of business presentation materials, you always need superb graphic design to stand out in this highly competitive world. As the old saying goes, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.”
Great first impressions are also made by outstanding graphic design.
Some people take years in university or college to study graphic design. The good thing is that if you are not one of them there is still hope!
Large corporations contact companies or highly capable individuals who are able to look after their corporate identity, but the rest of us need to either hire the local printing shop or do the design work by ourselves.
Nowadays, being able to create a good company image is not the stumbling block it was years ago. Most computer programs, such as word processors, desktop publishers etc., have ‘wizards’ that will help you create an identity for your business by using existing templates. All you have to do is plug-in your own information. These programs can create business cards, logos, brochures, newsletters, posters, and a host of other related presentation materials for you.
There are even software programs that are able to create a very professional company logo, whether your business is very conservative or very outlandish. Some of these can be for less than $20.
Web sites are also a big part of a company’s identity, more so if you are actually developing or own a company online. Through searching the Internet, you can buy templates for your web site that will almost be a perfect fit for your business, whether you are selling online or offline.
Even the presentation of your information, the actual words that tell about your product or service, or anything related, needs to be considered as a graphic design element. Consider some of the posters that promote milk for example. The advertising companies that promote the drinking of milk could write a multitude of words explaining the chemical make-up of milk and why you should drink it.
Instead, they add a large photo image of an active person drinking it outdoors, with a cow in the background, and put in one word in the corner of the poster, “Milk”. Everyone understands the meaning immediately from the photo, which is then reinforced by the word, or a few words.
When doing your own graphic design, the best principle for you to follow is that ‘less is more’. Allow yourself for lots of space. People find it hard to focus on things which are cluttered. Think of a desk for example. You do not really notice the desk when it’s cluttered with papers and junk. Remove the clutter and everyone will notice the desk. Likewise, try to keep things clean and simple.
If you do have to present a lot of words, try adding visual interest by adding pull-quotes, which are boxes set in the text which quote some of the highlights of the actual text. The box will add interest.
People will usually notice the biggest, boldest item first, and then go left to right if no clear indication is given. In a newspaper article, it is usually the photo first, then the headline, then bolded captions, then the actual article.
There is no shame in looking at a design that works for someone else, and emulating it, but not copying it.
By bearing in mind what your ‘desk’, or focus, is, and by using all the tools at your disposal, many of which are free, you will be able to produce graphic designs which are both eye catching and profitable.
J.M. Stevens is contributing editor at WebDesignArticles.net. This article may be reproduced provided that its complete content, links and author byline are kept intact and unchanged. No additional links permitted. Hyperlinks and/or URLs must remain both human clickable and search engine spiderable.