Image courtesy of Feuillu
It’s been a while since I put the focus back on you. Too long, in fact. So here’s another batch of your thought-provoking comments.
Lee Newham on, “The true cost of rebranding?”
“So what’s in a name anyway? If you recognize it’s the previous product, and it tastes the same as the previous product, then do you really care that the name has changed?
“Brand names get swallowed up and disappear. In the UK, Austin, Morris, Riley, Rover, Wolseley, Triumph, BSA, Woolworths, Timothy Whites, Lagonda, Vanden Plas. Only MG survived and that was gone for many years. How many people miss the passing of these names? I have nostalgic memories for some of these, but in reality, has it made may life worse not being surrounded by these names?
“I’d argue that design and graphics are more important than a name. A name is a bit like pasta. Often boring on it’s own, but add some sauce and it’s unique and appetising.”
“Some marketing directors choose an agency because of a personal friendship, need to impress a CEO, need to score brownie points with a firm they might join someday, etc.
“Another big one is the need for corporate marketing departments to have to spend the budget they are allocated or they lose funding in the succeeding fiscal year. There are so many layers, but agencies serve the needs of corporate marketing departments because they make it possible to spend large amounts of money and keep the wheels greased. This isn’t bad per se, it’s just a simple fact of how things at the corporate level work.
“One project I worked on as an employee working with another design agency had a flash banner of seven rotating images that cost (I saw the invoice) close to 5 figures because it involved “project management”, several meetings (that we didn’t need), several rounds of changes (because the agency interactive department didn’t follow the 3 bullet points I laid out), etc. etc. But hey, that Flash banner fed a lot of people that week, and is the reason the hot dog vendors on the streets of NY can stay in business, parking valets can make a living off of tips, and restaurants booking business meetings can keep the single working mom’s in the kitchen employed. Strange how these things work. But I could have made that banner in half a day (with blog breaks) for piddley-cents on the dollar! Maybe I should stop thinking like that, and start thinking about how my more-inflated fees might just help working-class.”
“Opting for the pro bono route may give you some experience, but it won’t put food on the table.
“This is another misconception, as a lot of non-profits do have a design budget. You just need to ask.
“Basically, it is up to each designer to decide just how much of their time will be donated – probono. I used to cut my charges in half, and the non-profits had to get donations to cover the rest.
“Also, designers are usually allowed to approach companies to donate money to cover a part (or all) of the design costs. This is how the real world works when you become a full-fledged designer, so might as well use a system that is already in place.”
“Design seems to be a regurgitation of ideas with your own spin. Is there any originality? And if you did produce something totally original, would it be accepted in the mainstream?”
“Another factor that effects pricing: fear.
“Being both a freelance designer and business planning consultant for almost eleven years, I’ve found that both the client and I, the service provider, are in vulnerable positions. The client wants a fair price (or a great deal) and wants the end-result to reflect their request or surpass their expectations. The service provider wants to receive a fair price (and get paid timely) and create something wonderful for the client. The client fears they may get ripped off; the service provider fears they may get the run around and never be compensated properly, aka ripped off.
“While these things are not actually discussed, I do believe this is an underlying tension that adversely impacts the pricing game. Each side can act defensively without even realizing it. Knowing a client’s budget, timeframe and expectations usually helps ease the pain of this awkward situation, but in my experience, when I’ve asked the client these things, they either don’t know or the answers change after project initiation. Even with a great deal of confidence and experience, every new client brings a new-found vulnerability.”
Jon Liebold, on, “Creativity for a moving world”
“Here in the US we are seeing the rise of people suing their employers because of the prevalence of this “always on, always connected” world society we have created companies are expecting their employees to be at their beck and call 24/7 and in some cases on an unpaid basis.
“While I do agree with the people suing their employers for being forced to work off the clock unpaid (which is a violation of US federal law), we are a lawsuit happy society. My favorite are the injury lawyers. Whenever I see one of those commercials I hear this in my head:
“I was recently involved in a slip and fall because in spite of the fact the sign was written in both English and Spanish, I could not comprehend what ‘Caution: Wet Floor’ meant and fell on my bottom. Because of my bruised ego and sore bottom I got $5,000,000 thanks to (insert blood-sucking lawyer name here)”
Thanks again to everyone who takes time to comment. Although I don’t reply to each and every one, it doesn’t mean I’m not appreciative. I am. Very much.