7 Basics to Create an Effective Design Brief

Behind every successful design project is a great design brief. Whether you’re the designer or the client, crafting a good brief is the first step to ensuring that the project runs smoothly. So here are the 7 most fundamental parts that together, make an effective design brief.

1. Background

Every good design brief should always start with the overview of the client’s business. This should include details like brand name, industry, products/services, unique selling points and competitors.

A brand guide should also be provided to ensure that all work will be designed accordingly.


2. Target Audience

Knowing the target audience for this project will help your designer make educated decisions throughout the design process. The audience should be defined by demographics such as age, gender, consumption behaviour, spending power, so on and forth. Having this information at hand will allow the designer to tailor the design that will cater and resonate with your target audience.


3. Objectives

The next thing the brief should cover is what the client wants for this project. Do they want to re-design their logo or just finetune it? Do they already have a rough idea of what they want or are they completely open to suggestions? Being able to focus on the project objectives will enable a smoother path towards the end goal.


4. Combination

Having a list of deliverables and its requirements will streamline the design process and help save the client time and money. While individual requirements may vary for different types of design projects, they usually include the following:

  • Dimensions
  • File formats
  • Bleed or no bleed
  • Web or Print


5. References

Probably one of the most neglected items on the project brief is references. Many clients have a rough idea of what they want in mind but most of them are not very good at expressing that. The best way to move forward is to ask the clients to send examples of what they like and what they don’t like.


6. Budget

This is the amount that the client is willing to pay for the project and without saying, this has to be defined clearly. Does the budget include stock images, commercial licenses for fonts or copywriting?

Having a clear understanding of the budget allows the designer to manage the client’s expectations, while also deciding how much time to dedicate to the project.


7. Schedule

Project schedules are a must-have for any decent design briefs. The schedule should be realistic and should also include a buffer for potential changes or unexpected obstacles.

A good project schedule not only indicates the final deadline, but also specifies any milestones between the start and finish of the project. This will allow both the client and the designer to monitor the project progress and to ensure that everything is on track.


Hopefully this article will help you – be it the designer or the client, to get a better understanding of how to craft a design brief. The next stage would be to review the work and it’d be great if you know  How to Provide Feedback/Edits Effectively to Your Graphic Designer.

Whether you’re looking to design a logo or any other brand assets, drop me a message!