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What Is a Graphic Designer and What Do They Do?

Most businesses rely on graphic design in one way or another, but many people don’t realize exactly what graphic design is or why it’s important for your company. Here is everything you need to know about the value of graphic design and how to choose a graphic designer with a lot to offer your company. 

What Do Graphic Designers Do?

Graphic designers are everywhere. Tiny businesses and huge corporations alike depend on graphic designers to create their visuals. Graphic designers build the visuals that go onto physical products, online, video advertisements, and much more

All sorts of businesses depend on graphic designers to make products and advertisements look attractive, communicate messaging through visuals, and develop the desired emotional response from viewers.

What Is Graphic Design? 

Graphic design is a complex science with a number of different variables. Most graphic designers have understandings of multiple technologies, a good sense of artistic expression, and understand marketing. 

Since graphic designers nearly always need to work with other members of a business or with customers, customer service also tends to be an important part of this job. No aspect of skills can be overlooked when you are choosing a quality graphic designer. 

A designer who has a good grasp of artistic expression that does not appreciate the technology needed to create it for display won’t be able to effectively do their job, no matter how gifted they are artistically. Designers who can handle all of the technical aspects of the job well but do not work well with customers won’t express their customer’s vision, no matter how successful they are at accomplishing technical goals. 

Here’s a closer look at some of the aspects of graphic design:

Tell a Story

Graphic designers aren’t just trying to create visually appealing material. They are trying to communicate something to the audience. Whether you are using a graphic to express a message that goes past a language barrier or want the graphic to elicit an emotional response in the audience, you need a graphic designer who understands how to create a story.

Stories are often more compelling than other ways of communicating data. It’s important to have good charts and other visuals available, but without the capacity to create a story to draw out the emotions that only stories can, your graphic designer will not have accomplished their goal. 

Influence Every Aspect of a Business’s Appearance

Most people think about graphic designers with regard to brochures or online graphics. However, the role of a graphic designer goes much further than the straightforward product design elements that most of us think about. Here are just a few of the aspects of your business that a graphic designer may take into account:

  • Font. The font you use, how big it is, and whether it is altered in any way are all up to the graphic designer. Good graphic designers know how to be creative without distracting.
  • Illustrations. This includes branded illustrations like characters that are associated with your company and informational illustration like infographics. 
  • Clothing and products. Whether your business makes products or not, you likely need something for employees to wear and to give out at company events. 
  • Internal reports. If you think that the role of a graphic designer is only about how they relate to your customers, think again. A graphic designer may also create internal reports that you use with stockholders and to communicate within the company. A good report presentation can make the difference between a boring or confusing meeting and a conversation that gets problems resolved. 
  • Marketing material. From flyers to posters to brochures, your graphic designer will be responsible for all kinds of marketing material. Attracting new customers means constantly adjusting your marketing strategy to meet emerging needs better. 
  • Product packaging. You probably think about graphic designers when you think about how a product actually looks, but how it is packaged is also extremely relevant. You need packaging to reflect your brand and be very practical for your product. 

Choosing a Graphic Design Agency

Advertisers are spending more than ever on creating advertisements of all kinds, including visual advertisements, so it should come as no surprise that a huge market has sprung up for graphic designers. Technically, anyone with the education and skill set to operate the right software can call themselves a graphic designer. Therefore, you will find a huge diversity in prices. Sometimes the difference in value won’t be clear. Here are a few things that you should look for in an effective graphic designer for your company

Guarantees Quality Communications

One of the most important parts of being a graphic designer is meeting with clients, determining what is desired, and discussing what is possible. A graphic designer’s clients rarely understand what effort they’re requesting or how graphic design can be utilized to accomplish their goals. 

Therefore, it is the graphic designer’s responsibility to speak clearly and honestly about what is possible, what may be done better in a different way, and how various decisions will affect the client’s bottom line. Be suspicious of any graphic designer that says yes to everything you propose. This suggests that they may not really understand what you need or that they are just trying to secure the job. 

They may tell you the limitations further down the road when you no longer have the option of choosing a different designer. A good designer should be willing to share enough of the pertinent information about graphic design that you can fully understand decision-making and plans. 

Straightforward Costs

The benefits of solid graphic design are extensive, and you shouldn’t be surprised by quality designers who ask a fairly high price tag. That said, you should know just what you’re getting for the cost.

Avoid designers who haggle with you over the price of specific projects. It is better for most companies to choose a flat rate contract for everything they need to do. If you are doing it on a project-by-project basis, make sure you are clear about what discrepancies might come up and how the cost would be affected along the way.

Confident in an Array of Design Products

Graphic design software is constantly evolving, and new tools are available every day to dedicated graphic designers. That said, the same old techniques using paper and pencil are often effective for communicating ideas and sketching out concepts. 

You want an artist who knows how to use all kinds of different highly technical equipment but is competent enough to sketch out an idea for you while discussing options. The best graphic designers keep using what works while being open-minded about new ideas. They are constantly seeking out ways to improve.

Pick the Best Graphic Designer

You need a graphic designer that makes promises they can keep, has excellent communication skills, and offers a diverse skill-set. Look for a company that offers reliable pricing and plenty of back-and-forth and communication without charging you more. 

The best graphic designer for your company can go a long way to changing your success rate in multiple areas of your business. It can be tempting to try to handle the graphic design yourself or outsource as affordably as possible by contract. However, choosing a high-quality graphic designer who has your company’s best interests in mind for the long-term is your path to business success with graphic design.


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