Picture this: You are about to get married, and you hire a designer to make a dress or tux for the special day. You’re a pretty traditional guy or gal, so you’re surprised when the designer hands over an avant-garde, orange outfit with neon lights. That’s not what you expected for your trip to the altar.

Suffice it to say, that designer doesn’t match your personal style.

Did you know the same thing can happen when choosing a graphic designer for your business? Everyone has their own aesthetic, and if you and your graphic designer’s styles don’t mesh, you can end up with a neon orange nightmare on your hands.

You can avoid that problem with some simple tips. Here’s what you should consider when hiring a graphic designer for your next company initiative.

1. Consider the Skills Needed

Before you can even think about personal style, you have to consider your budget. For instance, if you’re on a tight budget, you might want the designer to use stock photos. If you have a little extra money, you can ask the designer to take their own photos or create custom artwork.

Understanding what you need out of the project is an important step in finding a designer that fits your style.

Related: 5 Things You Need for Your First Design Meeting

2. Check Industry Experience

Your style is partially rooted in the industry you work in. While it doesn’t completely define your style, it does have have an impact, so choose a designer that has experience in your industry. While a lack of industry experience isn’t necessarily a disqualifier, it could take some time to get on the same page with a designer who has never worked with companies like yours before.

3. Check their Portfolio

Find designers that specialize in your industry and have the skills you require, and then check out their portfolios. You want to look at specific aspects of the designs when checking out these examples of their previous work. Look at the color, lines, texture, shape, and typography to see if these match your aesthetic. Also look the space used: Does the designer implement free space in the design, or is everything compact?

Related: Why You Should Ask Your Printer about their Creative Team

4. Talk to Clients

When you’re looking for a designer, don’t be shy. Reach out to some of the clients listed in the portfolio and speak to them about the creative process when working with the designer. Did the designer adapt to their specific styles? Did the designer provide creative solutions? Is the designer open to suggestions? The answers to these questions will give you a much better idea of how you will work with them.

5. Interview the Designer Over Video Chat

It’s hard to completely understand a designer’s style based on designs alone. You also need to interview the designer to get a better feel for his or her personal style. Talk about your brand, marketing needs, and specific style and see how the designer reacts. Does he/she share the same style, or is he/she trying to point you in a direction that you think would be bad for your brand?

Related: What Your Graphic Designers Need to Hit the Mark

Style Matters

Style doesn’t just matter at your wedding. It also matters with your business’ graphic design. Follow these tips to hire a graphic designer that will meet your needs.

Is your head swimming thinking about finding the perfect graphic designer? With 140 smart people under one roof, it’s easy to find the right graphic designer with Ironmark. Drop us a line to set up a chat, and you’ll see why so many people love our team of creatives.

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Written by Chris McCready

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