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The Cost of Bad Design:

“If you think that good design is expensive, you should look at the cost of bad design.”
- Dr. Ralf Speth CEO Jaguar Land Rover

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You get what you don’t pay for.

Sure you can get by, maybe even do great for yourself. But if you want to grow and more importantly, keep up with the times, you need to invest in how your business looks and is perceived by others. Branding is really about how your customers see you. If you don’t feel like spending money on your business customers won’t either. 

As tastes have evolved businesses need to keep up. People not only expect exceptional customer service but they expect experiences, not just a collection of things/services you want people to buy. How you will give them an experience they won’t forget? 

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Are you experienced?

This is where you need to consider your branding. Never underestimate the power of design and how you present yourself to the world. We live in a 3 second visual culture. It doesn’t matter how great you are at what you do If someone is not impressed by how you look. Of course you need still to be an exceptional business. But if you don’t care how well you present yourself your potential customers will go elsewhere. Branding is not the place to cut corners.

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How to find the right designer.

Just because you know someone who is an “artist” doesn’t necessarily mean they are the person for you. Do your own research. Look at what other leaders in your field are doing. It’s not about copying what they do but to get an idea of the quality of their design. What makes them stand out? What impresses you about their design? Does it look professional and contemporary?


Now if you are feeling in over your head with this saying to yourself “I don’t know what the hell good design is!” Fear not. You can’t be good at everything. I have no idea what good plumbing involves just that it works. This is why I pay a plumber to fix my pipes. He’s the expert. Same goes for design. Hire an expert and you’ll be in good hands. Wink.

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Don’t make the face of your business boring, make it memorable.

So what makes a business memorable? Everything rolled into one. It’s not just a new logo or website. It’s that and everything else you do awesomely. It’s your personality, your product, your service, it all needs to be exceptional. 


It’s not all bells and whistles either. People want to find what they need in the shortest time possible or they will bail out. Give ‘em what they want, and what they need, put it all out front, but do it tastefully.

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What if I have bad design?

It happens. We try and cut corners, hire a friend. Maybe it’s not even bad design, just out-of-date. It can be difficult to keep up with everything when running a business. But you should never let your design fall into the “I’ll get to that later category”.   

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So what does good design cost?

The better question is what is the value of good design? If it’s for your livelihood then its worth as much as you can afford for the right design. Good design isn’t free. Here is where you get what you pay for. If you spend $100 on a logo, you probably deserve a logo that looks like a poorly executed amateur piece or a generic stock piece with your name plugged into it made by someone who’s pricing is unlivable in the United States.  Of course not everyone can afford to spend xxx dollars on design, I get it. There’s room for everyone at the table.

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The best of you

Don’t look for the cheapest option. Asking designers to bid for your work will produce a race-to-the-bottom competition where quality is sacrificed for a desperate need for cash.

Take your time searching for the designer who’s work speaks to you. You’ll know it when you see it, and you won’t be able to live without it.

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Good Design Matters
Aron Gagliardo
Design AGO