Join Sean Adams for an in-depth discussion in this video Presentation, part of Branding for Designers.
- It's been said that persuasion is 90% of the job in graphic design. This isn't about forcing a client to let you have your way. It's about convincing someone that your solution is the right one. Designers live in a world of possibilities and design. Most of our clients rely on facts and figures to make decisions. So we need to take the messy creative process and our seemingly subjective decision making and create a logical presentation in their language.
First, the presentation needs to be put into a format that can be projected, displayed on a monitor, or printed. I use a landscape tabloid size document and create the file in InDesign. This is similar to a screen proportion and is inexpensive to print. Provide a title page with the project name, client, date, and your name. You can also add information on the master page with the project, date, and your name. The presentation may be viewed after you have left the building.
Someone with little knowledge of the project may look at it and have questions. Design the presentation with this in mind. Make it understandable to a child. Restate the assignment. I find it useful to provide the question someone may be asking and then answer it. List your research questions. Who, how, and what on individual pages. Keep the pages as simple and clear as possible. If you put all the questions on one page, the viewer can be confused.
Now answer the questions the same way, on individual pages. Give the viewer time to let the information sink in. Keep the answers as simple as possible. You can present the backup information of research and interviews at the end of the document. Add your list of five to eight words to describe the values. Before this point, you should have finalized these with the CEO and anyone else involved. If answers are complicated, it's a good idea to use diagrams.
Everyone is visual. Even mathematicians live in a world of television, movies, and advertising. It may be clearer to show the audience in a visual rather than a paragraph. Incorporate other visuals to clarify your findings. Don't list the competition, use the logos. Show all of the current visual material you've collected on one page. This is a good way to see the breadth of the work at once, something clients rarely do.
Typically, the materials won't feel like a common and consistent family. That's not apparent until the client sees it as a whole. Remember, someone in the room, or who might see the document later, probably had a hand in some of the existing materials. It's a good idea to not say, "Boy this is ugly." Find a positive attribute. And finally, add a call to action. Tell the client what should happen. The next step is to take this information and proceed to the design studies.
And remember to end with a page that says, "Thank you."
- The history of branding (pre- and post-1950)
- The elements of branding
- Conducting research
- Solving problems and presenting solutions
- Creating logos and identity systems
- Building a visual system with color, typography, and more
- Communicating branding with manuals and vision books