How Does Graphic Design Enhance Marketing Efforts?

More and more, marketing and graphic design are becoming one. While there has always been a need for graphic design for any good marketing campaign, the lines are blurring between strictly a marketer and a graphic designer.

Why is that? Well think about how many posts you’ve seen about content marketing and it’s absolute importance in a marketing strategy’s execution. A big portion (in fact, almost all) of successful content marketing revolves around some great graphic design.

Does that mean that a marketer should be technically skilled in everything graphic design? I don’t think so. I also don’t think it hurts to have a little knowledge about programs such as Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, or know some key graphic design terms (this is a great article to check out for some of those terms-plus it’s an info-graphic!).

So, what does graphic design do for marketing? These are two that I have had experience with, but there are tons!

  1. Creates and enforces a brand image
  2. Makes for seamless ease of use, particularly with mobile

 

blog 5 graphic

Creating a Brand Image with Graphic Design

The combination of text and images that a brand composes and uses says a lot about who they are. Graphic design makes up the logo/brand mark, design of advertisements, company websites, etc. The design of any of these factors is the first impression to a consumer, so it should accurately represent the company/brand.

This means that your brand image should match your target market, be consistent and be refined. All of these things are accomplished through the use of graphic design.

Match your Target Market

In order to have a successful and likable brand image among your target market you must take into consideration several factors. You should know the intentions, needs, desires, likes/dislikes and behaviors of your target market. All of those factors play a role in the colors used, graphics, format and text of everything you produce.

What does your target market respond to? What appeals to your target market most? What does your target market consider when they judge the look and overall aesthetic of something?

These are all questions that must be answered in order to have effective graphic design that will ultimately elevate your marketing strategy and move your marketing goals forward.

Consistency

Once you know what your target market wants and is most effected by you can craft your brand image. It is important to keep your brand image consistent in everything that you do, because like I mentioned earlier, this is how first impressions are made.

Your brand image has the power to build brand awareness and brand loyalty, but only if consumers can recognize it easily. Keep the colors, font, image styles and overall aesthetic consistent on everything from a banner ad, to an e-commerce site to the employee training books.

Your brand is made up of many things, like values, a vision and a mission, but it is also important to remember that how you present all of those things also matters.

Refine your Successes

Now that your overall graphic design matches with your target market and is consistent, it is time to refine it. Just like every process there must be feedback and measurement. Since we might not get everything right the first time, it is important to go back and see how your brand image and your overall graphic design is being received. Do people like it? Is it truly representing the company in the best and most accurate way?

Figure out what works and what doesn’t work, then make changes. Keep on refining your graphic design elements, but don’t lose the brand image you’ve built. Sure, you can re-brand, but I think it is better to refine.

Seamless Ease of Use

Graphic designers have this knack for understanding how to make something look good. And sometimes when something looks good, it has the opportunity to work well too. What do I mean by that?

Perhaps an example would be a good place to start. Let’s talk about Instagram.

Most of you probably have an Instagram account, and most of you probably would agree that it is user friendly. The overall layout of the app is clean and simple, and the icons that indicate different functions are representative and also have a clean appearance.

So, how does graphic design come into play?

Graphic designers can take the concept of functionality and display of information and make it user friendly, coherent and logical to the viewer/user.

Digital Marketing Benefits from This

I think that it is more apparent in the mobile application of marketing efforts that we can really see how important it is to work with a graphic designer to display your information. In such a small space how can we make the most of it? How can we make it easy for users to find what they are looking for? Is the experience on the mobile platform easy and enjoyable?

These are the things you must consider when taking your company to the web, specifically for mobile use. Graphic designers can create a look that will help users find what they want, represent your brand and get all the information you want in an aesthetically pleasing manner.

Key Takeaways

Marketing and graphic design are two areas that are becoming closely integrated and dependent on each other. Not only do marketing materials, advertisements and website have to look good, they also have to work. Graphic designers can create things that users want to clock on, for example. And that helps marketing and the bottom line.

What does graphic design do your your marketing? Or, what does marketing do for your graphic design? Leave me a comment, or Tweet me at @akannakeefe with the hashtag #mymktgstory to let me know!

From Marketing Student to Marketing Graduate

After three years of hard work, occasional tears and many challenging (but rewarding) projects I am proud to say that I graduated with my B.S. Business Marketing from the University of Northern Colorado. I took this journey on full-force because I knew it was going to make me into the person I wanted to be.

You find your passion, you learn as much as you can and you keep working at it, day in and day out.

I graduated not very long ago, so what can I share with you? What did I learn that can help you?

Lessons Learned blog

Lessons Learned:

I learned many things throughout my undergraduate career and I am going to share them with you. These are things that if I would have known them sooner would have made life a little easier, but going through the tough times to learn these lessons has given me the knowledge, experience and strength to be better at what I do.

Lesson 1: Find your people.

Picture this: Your professor (or boss) tells you that you will be working in a group on a new project. You are really excited about the project because you know that you’ve got what it takes to make it amazing. Then you meet your fellow group members and you sink a little inside because you’ve worked with two of them before and had a bad experience. Maybe they didn’t pull their weight, or maybe they like to wait until the very last minute to get things done even though you have pressures to get it done early.

What do you do?

You can’t change group members and you can’t just quit the project. You find your people. You know who these people are, most likely because you’ve worked with them before. Ask for their help throughout the project, get their insight on things and keep their outside perspective close.

These are the people who will pull through for you, who will answer your questions and offer up their well-meaning advice. Take it all, and don’t forget to say thank you.

This street goes both ways, folks. They are your people, so you better be theirs. When they need help or they come to you, be there for them. Give them your advice, answer their questions and help them wherever you can. It’s about collaboration and partnerships.

Lesson 2: Make time for what matters.

This is one of those lessons that we all know, but won’t really do until we see the real results. So what am I talking about?

I’m talking about staying up the extra hour to get more work done instead of going to bed. I’m talking about using 15 minutes between tasks to do something productive. I’m talking about saying no to the concert on Saturday night to get ahead on work for the week.

What I’m not saying is to not live life, or have fun or make some awesome memories.

It’s about making the tough choices that define you as a hustler and the success story.

Hard work pays off in big ways, and I learned that through the experiences I made myself have but not want to have.

It’s hard to be at school for 10 hours working on projects, meeting with groups and studying. It’s even harder to stay for 11 or 12 when all you want to do is go home and sleep, telling yourself that you’ll wake up early and do it in the morning. But once you tell yourself you’ll push it off and it will be fine you’ve lost. Push through the work for just a little bit longer, don’t go to bed with work hanging over your head.

I know it’s hard to make time for work when you already dedicate so much already, but trust me when I say it is always, always worth it.

Lesson 3: Use your planner.

I don’t care if your planner is on your phone, on a different sticky-note everyday or in a traditional planner. It doesn’t matter how you choose to plan, it just matters that you actively do.

Life and work comes at you all of the time, and there are so many things going on that you’re bound to forget some of them. This is there the handy dandy planner comes in. Now I know, I know, you’ve been told to use a planner since 4th grade, but I’m telling you again!

Getting all of your work down in one place allows you to visualize what you have to do, how much you have to do, and how it all fits in a time frame. Deadlines can creep up on you, so writing everything down and seeing where work falls can help you plan how to tackle it most efficiently and effectively. You can even use a planner for social media, which you can read about here.

Use your planner, that’s all.

Conclusion

My undergraduate career taught me many things, and the few I shared with you today are things I will carry with me into the next chapter of my life. Learning from experiences and developing skills that enhance our work is an important part of going through life.

What are some important life lessons you have learned that make you better? Leave a comment below or Tweet me @akannakeefe with the hashtag #mymktgstory with your lessons!