Three Reasons DIY Graphic Design May Not Be a Good Idea

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custom_printed_labelsWe live in the age of DIY. Our personal devices and computers are designed to make things easy, and if we need information on how to accomplish a task (whether digital or not), it’s only a click away. People are now able to accomplish everything from home improvement to new gourmet recipes under their own roofs, without needing the help of professionals as they once did.

And yet, there are certain services we should think twice about taking on, especially if we want to achieve a truly professional look and feel. For homeowners, major renovations would fall into this category. For small businesses looking to take advantage of direct mail or other printed marketing efforts, graphic design also falls into this category.

Sure, it’s tempting to download a graphics program (or use the basic software that came with your computer) and try to save the money you would pay a graphic designer. But the fact is, when you look at the printed materials published by businesses, you can tell what’s done professionally and what isn’t. A certain fraction of DIY efforts might turn out well, but on the whole, professional graphics work has a distinct value in the marketplace.

Here are the top three reasons why your business should resist the urge to do your graphic design project in house (unless you have a highly trained designer on staff), and look toward professionals instead.

1. They Have Higher Standards

Let’s face it—when you hire a professional, you’re more likely to be surprised by how great your project looks. Professionals have been through training and been taught to reach for a higher standard in everything from layout to colors and text. That’s because the businesses who hire them (that’s you) need to stand out from the crowd. The only way to accomplish that is by producing work that meets a higher standard.

2. They Get to the Heart of the Matter

Trained graphic design teams have the skills and know-how to make your vision a reality. Most businesses have a fairly clear idea of what they want to accomplish for their print project, and the message/imagery they want to convey—they just don’t have command of the technology to actually produce great results. A reputable graphic designer is not only capable of producing high quality graphics in a short amount of time—he or she is able to look at your ideas and proposals and get to the heart of the matter, producing something that perfectly captures what you’re looking for.

3. You’ll Save Time & Money

The thing some small businesses don’t understand about pro graphic design is that might actually be the most affordable solution. Think about it. You (or someone on your staff) can struggle for hours to achieve the effects you want. This costs time and money that could be spent in more productive ways. By going directly to a professional (especially if they can handle other aspects of your project as well, such as direct mail, labeling, mailing lists, etc.), you take the most direct and efficient route to a successful project—not a winding and difficult path to mediocre results.

Making the right call

The more time you spend in the planning phase of your printing/mailing project, the less efficient your project will ultimately be. When you make the decision to bring a reputable professional on board, you will have to pay a fee—but the vast majority of small to medium sized businesses are happy with the decision to hire a professional—not only because it leads to successful projects, but because it makes the process more efficient, less stressful, and ultimately more affordable in the end.