As Graphic and Web Designers we can sometimes feel like that clients are working against us to get a project finished. The truth of the matter is that they are wanting to get the same goal as you. They want the best end result just like you do. Your clients did not go to design school like you did they do not know all design terms or rules. You need to know exactly how to communicate with your client to get the best end result and make your project go easy as possible. This is something that is not going to come easy to alot of you. It is going to take some time for you to learn this skill and learn to feel out different clients.
Ask the right questions
The best way to start with talking with a client is to make sure that you are asking the right questions at the start. Knowing the right questions to ask a client at the start of the project can make things further down the road of the project a lot easier. This is your chance to get all the information about the client, industry, and project. You need to get as much as you can so when you start your research, yes you need to do research, and start designing. Remember your client wants to help make sure that their end result is not crap also so do not clam up here when they are willing to give you everything you need.
I can hear you screaming at your screen; “that is all great but what questions should I be asking?!”
Well first of all calm down no one likes to be yelled at. Secondly I am going to give you some questions to start you off and help you get the info you need. Below are some questions you must ask what your follow ups are after them you will have to learn for experience and what fits your work flow.
- What is your industry?
- Who are your competitors?
- How do you stand out in the market?
- How big is your market?
- What are you looking to accomplish with this project?
- What are you looking for a turnaround time?
Understand your clients needs
As a designer you need to understand exactly what your client needs are. You need to know exactly what problem you are solving. This means you need to know how to talk with your clients and direct the conversation the way it needs to go. Sometimes a client will not know what they are looking for or how to get what is on their mind on the table. This is where your communication skills come in handy. You need to help your client get the right info out to help with the project as best as they can. You need to be able to understand the room and the best way to lead it how you want. This is only going to come from experience, and yes a lot of failures. So that means you better roll your sleeves up and get to work.