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How to write a design brief

What details you need to outline when working with a creative agency

The easiest way to explain a design brief is as a one-two page document detailing the strategy and goals of a creative project.

So, it is the why and how for planning all your creative endeavours. Not only that, having a design brief at the ready, when going to a creative agency, saves you so much time and money!

The holy grail of how to put together a superior design brief

Your Project Goal: Why are you doing this project? How will it add value to your business? What is the desired outcome of this project?
With all these questions you want to be specific. If you want to be able to properly monitor your success, then your goals must be, as HubSpot like to say, SMART: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely. To understand how to put together a SMART goal or how to use HubSpot then please contact us.

Type of Project: This could be anything from starting up a whole new business to graphic style development. Whatever your project is, you need to keep your SMART goals in mind. For example, we do brand, digital and industrial projects. This is basically helping you build your brand, websites, logos, packaging, promotion events and more.

Timeframe: Deadlines are never fun but always necessary. You need to know how long pre-production and post-production will take and have a launch date confirmed from the off. Without having a pre-planned timeframe, the agency needs to plan for how much time and resources each project will need. An unrealistic or restrictively short timeframe will usually just lead to unnecessary costs being accrued and reducing the chance of quality work being produced. The creative agency will usually provide a timeline based on your deadlines and key touchpoints and highlight when feedback and input is required from you so you can plan your time too.

Style and Tone: Specify how the brand should look and feel, and any do’s and don’ts. Brand Guidelines are almost crucial for this stage. Even if it is old, your brand guidelines allow your entire team to all be on one page as to the 'look and feel' of your brand. This will be your font, brand colours, logos and so much more. However, if you do have any competitors or inspiration that may have an impact on the outcome of your project, it is always worth noting them down too. Our design team can help you to create your brand guidelines if needed.

Budget: This one is kind of obvious. The price for staffing, resources, equipment, utilities and other miscellaneous costs must all be taken into consideration. Is it affordable and will it lead to profit? Make sure that you have a budget prepared and agreed before you approach a creative agency to start work.

Project Details: Make sure that you have decided what will generate leads and growth while staying in line with your company’s purpose. Now put it all together. Put all the important details in one place in a cohesive, chronological order. This is basically your battle plan. The rest was all a breakdown of the specifics. This is the blueprint.

Key Deliverables: This is the key part if you are using a creative agency. What do you want us to do for you?

There you have it, a nice little list to help you build a design brief! Now you can get creating!

For more information on the assets we provide or how to put all these ideas together, please do not hesitate to contact our team. Our new campaign ‘Your Business in Your Hands’ has been created specifically to help small businesses feel secure with insider knowledge, for more of our blogs in this series click here.