Working in one of the most prestigious design firms in the UK, I have been acquainted with hundreds of clients and have successfully completed each and every design task to the best of my capacities and knowledge.
Recently, I had an encounter with one of the finickiest US clients whose demands and expectations from me were unrealistically crazy and challenging. Before I proceed with my story and the lessons I learned, let me make it clear that some of my most wonderful clients are from the US.
However, working with that particular client made me realise the impact cultural and creative differences can have on a project. While we British aren’t as culturally different from Americans as designer from other parts of the world, what I learned from my experience may help designers from all across the world in satisfying clients from a different country.
All differences aside, the client himself was quite a difficult one to deal with. Like most people who aren’t well aware of design technicalities, he couldn’t stick to one idea or decision and demanded many changes.
Throughout the encounter, he asked me certain questions that had no relevance with logo designing whatsoever. However,I took it positively because it felt like he was very loyal and sincere with his companyand wanted to work with a person with comprehensive knowledge and experience.
So, the first lesson to learn here is to be patient and try to put your feet in your client’s shoe in order to understand their perception. Let’s continue with other lessons I learned.
Be As Serious About the Logo As Your Client
Logo designing is no joke; it actually drags the soul of your body when you come across unusual needs and requirements of young entrepreneurs or business adventurists.
Obviously, in the initial phases of business development, business owners are quite concerned many questions such as: how their logo would look; would it be able to create an impact in the market; would it standout; would it lure potential customers and reinforce privileged clients for a repurchase; would it be attractive and flexible enough to meet digital marketing and branding standards;and would it stay relevant for long.
When you have so much to worry about, it quite natural to come up with certain unrealistic questions, which you may not have an answer to. All you can do is try to answer them as comprehensively and professionally as possible.
Trust Has To Be Establishment
I tried to answer each and everything with the best of knowledge and capacity. However, you would be surprised to know that even when I spend nearly 3 days in answering to his questions, he still wasn’t ready to trust someone he met online. He was sceptical of me being a British and even when I assured him of my ethnicity, he wasn’t sure if he can trust a designer he can’t personally meet.
So, besides winning the contract by convincing him with all I had, I also had to build up his opinion about the reliability, and credibility of online services, especially of UK based graphic designing firms catering to US based clientele.
Communication Skills Are Essential for Everyone
Our firm took this US-based lead as a challenge and I convinced myself that no matter what it takes, I would do all it takes to satisfy this client. I took it constructively. Despite having a whole in-house team that manages communication and coordination with clients, I worked on my own communication skills to be better able to answer his questions. After all, I was the one responsible for creating his logo.
I realized that something was lacking on my side as well and if it wasn’t for this encounter, I wouldn’t have been able to work on my shortcomings.
Your Methodology Matters
There is a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to everything and when it comes to art and designing, it gets a little more intense because graphic designers are creative artists who need to have their own space for coming up with useful or effective logo designs.
This makes it pretty clear that before kicking off complicated design projects, careful considerations, genuine deliberations, and thoughtful responses enable logo designers to blend art and science to produce logos that stand and speak on their own.
The fact that my firm employs agilemethodology to keep the whole process simple and flexible was a huge plus. It allowed us to keep our client involved in every phase and ensure the highest standards of service without missing deadlines.
Aim for a Win-Win Situation
Throughout this time, I didn’t allow my client intimidate me at any point. I didn’t even make him feel how unrealistic and unprofessional he had been — but I was happy that he loved my logo design and acknowledged the logo concept with all heads up.
The way he communicated after I showed him the final design was completely different from how he build his stance initially.He knew he was fretting a lot about his logo design that stretched way too longer than usual but that came naturally not deliberately.
Later, I realised that he was a young entrepreneur of just 17 who was extremely worried about his clothing brand and how his business image would go in the market.
So, it all turned out to be a positive experience despite all the ‘craziness’ involved. I hope what I shared here would prove helpful to all aspiring designers who are facing similar challenges.
Ainiclive is a professional content writer, a devout cat worshipper, and a loving mother of three adorable daughters. After ten years of working as Communication Manager in a well-known corporation, Aimee decided to be her own boss and ventured into the world of freelance writing. As an expert content writer, she often lends her services to various content firms and loves to share her knowledge through her books and blogs.