Using a properly thought out Design Spec can help you find better clients, clients with more money to spend and better, more interesting projects.
Prompted by a regular stream of Reverb Studios clients over the years who weren’t quite sure what they wanted in a new website or other design project and in response to me asking them for more guidance just pointed to a competitors website, or worst still a very long list of totally different competitor websites, and expected me to take it from there, I recently decided to do some research on how best to extract the maximum amount of detailed information from a client before starting any new design project.
The benefits to this are as follows as I see it:
- You can avoid that initial, face-to-face, time (and money) sapping meeting with a client where no one is really prepared or knows what they want or what needs doing.
- You get to see if a client is a good fit for you and your services and vice versa, whether the client can actually be served by you at all.
- You get an idea of how serious and defined a client is about their business and their business goals. Asking them to sit down and think about their business and goals is something of value to them if they havn’t done it before.
- By asking them for their budget, you separate the kind of clients who want something for nothing or everything in the world for very little investment from those who are prepared to put their money where their mouths are and get something of real value in return.
- You get to come across as a professional who is serious and detailed about how they do things.
- It gives much needed focus to a project that both sides can greatly benefit from.
Following my research across several articles, some marketing and design classes I’ve completed in recent years, my recent design degree and drawing from my now 15 years in a design related business, I drafted and built the following Design Brief Worksheet and put it in digital form:
Please use the form to think about your own business’s current performance, goals, use it to hire my own services or adapt it for your own use.