Picking a graphic designer is a very important decision when it comes to your business’s image. If you go with the cheapest, most likely your company’s graphics will look in line with that price point. If you go with the most expensive, you may be paying more than you need to for your best ROI on your design.
What is more important to consider than price is quality of work, design style in line with your needs and past experience.
If the designer or design company that you are considering doesn’t bother to present thier brochure or website in a way that looks appealing to you, don’t expect any better of a presentation when they get their hands on your brand.
If you review their samples or portfolio all come across in one style, like everything is super grungy or everything is overly femine, you may expect that your designs will like alike. It could be that the designer has more samples that aren’t listed on thier website and they just like to promote that style; if that is the case, you have to ask yourself if you are comfortable hiring someone to work in a style that they don’t have an affinitty for. It could also be they just keep getting clients that want the same look and the designer has not had the opportunity to break out of that style; if you find it is this latter situation, you may be really glad to go with that designer as they may be itching to do something different. If it turns out that the designer is only good at grungy designs and you need a medical website, you may want to look elsewhere.
Past experience can be a toss up.
It can be a good thing that your designer does not know much about your industry. It will ensure that all of the jargon of your business can be translated verbally and graphically to plain English. It also could be beneficial if your designer knows the basics of your business if they need to become a subject matter expert of your business to appeal to other experts in your audience… but a good designer will have done some research on your industry before starting any project.
Another thing to consider is location.
If you hire a local designer, they will know your local audience. For instance, colours that you may see in a Pride Parade may be seen more as Fiesta colours if you are in San Antonio. There may be words or other ideas that a foreign designer just can’t connect with to your audience.
In the end…
The best advice that I can give you to when looking for the right designer is to review their portfolio, talk to them and make sure it is a good match. It may be good to compare designer’s rates but don’t let the rate alone be what you make your decision on. If it turns out you weren’t happy with a project, you can go to another designer… you will just have to go through the ‘getting to know you’ phase again.