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**This post has been updated. It was originally written in 2015 by Amanda Laird** 


Communications professionals are born with that special something – the gift of the gab, the art of persuasion, a natural talent for expressing their ideas. But for some reason when it comes to communicating ideas for visual campaigns, conversations with designers can be a little – shall we say challenging.

Designers have had their fair share of frustrating conversations with communications pros. A Beyond PR blog post breaks down some of the typical conversations that take place during the design process. While the post is sure to make you LOL, it also offers up some solid advice to help you navigate the design process and get to the results you want, faster.


#1. Know what you’re trying to achieve.

Designers solve problems. So know what problem you’re trying to solve with your visuals. Will they be used online or in print? What is the preferred file type? How about size and shapes? Share this with your designer from the get-go. And if you can’t answer these questions, maybe you’re not ready to engage the design team.


#2. Show. Don’t Tell.

Cool means something different to me than it does to you. And it definitely means something different to your designer. Find examples of visuals that capture that look and feel of what you’re going for.

Cision’s Darrin Suzuki adds, “did you know the colour red has 285 different shades visible to the naked eye?  So, when clients ask me to use a colour without an example, often it can mean a lot of work (and wasted hours = $$) to shift part of a design from one colour to another.”

The more examples you can provide the better your designer will understand your objectives.



#3. Offer constructive feedback.

It can take a few tries to get something just right, so be prepared for a couple of rounds of revisions and to offer constructive feedback on each. Take the time to really think through the design – look at the big picture and the individual details like colours and fonts. Then find the words to clearly communicate your likes and dislikes. You’re a communicator, you got this!

You say: “Something’s not working, but I’m not sure what.”

Designer hears: “I still don’t know what I want, continue to read my mind.”


About Amy-Louise Tracey

Amy-Louise Tracey is the Communications Manager at CNW Group. Follow her @AmyLouiseTracey.

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