In recent weeks, we’ve been looking at The Belford Group’s six service areas and sharing more about what each service includes—and what it means for our clients. This week, we’re taking a look—literally—at our most visual service…Graphic Design.

The idea of graphic design is far from new, it was important before computers opened the door to creating more technical and attractive designs for a growing number of functions.

It has a job 

Graphic design has a job to do. It conveys a non-verbal, visual message about your business or organization across many media. Your graphics are more than likely going to be someone’s first impression of your business or organization. We all know it’s important to make a good first impression, right? This means it’s vital to have professional and consistent graphics in all your printed materials, on your website and in other materials that represent your brand.

Our Senior Graphic Designer Sarah Thurstenson says that “quality graphic design drastically improves your marketing materials. A well-designed piece-whether that is printed materials or a website-will support and enhance your message using visual language.”

We love what Ben Stone, a graphic designer in Oklahoma, has to say about what a graphic designer does.

“A graphic designer works as a facilitator, creating designs that help the user accomplish a task. This could be anything from finding information to recognizing a brand,” he writes.

“This is why (websites), logos and print ads with poor graphic design aren’t as effective as well-designed ones. They don’t help the viewer get things done. Sometimes, they even get in the way.”

We focus our graphic design efforts on two major ideas: making it look good and making it function. This is accomplished through color selection, creative use of typefaces (fonts), and artistic interpretations and manipulations of images.


 ‘Make it pretty’ 

Around The Belford Group, we have a saying … “make it pretty.” What we’re saying is, let’s make the graphics we create be beautiful … appealing to the eye. This could be the almost Victorian style we created for Listed In Randolph’s website and branding package, or it could be the more technical approach found on TLC Trakker’s website and branding.

The graphic design should make someone want to see more and learn more about the company.


Not just about being ‘pretty’ 

While graphic design elements should be attractive, they also have a functional purpose. Non-verbal cues can be used to give direction, guide someone to action or generate recognition of the brand.

We accomplish this in several ways.

This button is at the top left corner of City Title & Closing’s website. The shape and calculator image send a clear message that says “click here to crunch some numbers” and the words tell you what numbers will be calculated.

See the calculator in the upper left corner of City Title & Closing’s  website? That graphic clearly tells the person that it is where they can go get calculations generated, even if the words on the button didn’t say so. The shape of the graphic says “I’m a button…click me” and the image of a calculator tells someone that they will be able to do some number crunching with that part of the website.

Another example is the logo and website we created for the Frisco Festival  inRogers. The color selection says excitement and the images portray both the event’s history and fun. The words within the logo are strategically placed to flash a message about when and what the festival is about. This message tells potential vendors and attendees of the event just what they will find … excitement and history.


It’s all about you

We specialize in creating graphics that are beautiful and functional. But what we also work to do is make the graphics all about you, the client. We want to convey your message, not ours. That’s why we ask our clients to let us “interview” them with a web development questionnaire before we even start their work. We want to know about your goals and target audience, and how the graphic elements will be used (website, printed material, etc.). We also take into consideration deadlines, budgets and corporate culture when creating graphic design pieces.

We firmly believe that good graphic design can make or break a business. What does your graphic design do for you?

The Belford Group is an experienced image-building marketing and website development agency, with more than a decade spent providing creative marketing and advertising solutions to fit any budget …and any medium.

Call us. We’d love to hear from you.