How to Explain What You Want As a Non-Designer


As a small business owner, you’ve no doubt run into the challenge of working with designers and other creatives. It can be hard to communicate with them, as the jargon leads to a disconnect.

The last thing you want when working with a designer is to end up with something that doesn’t achieve its goal. Or worse, a never-ending project that exists in a never-ending state of revisions.

This dreaded fate can be avoided, however. Below we offer a few ways you can effectively communicate your goals as a non-designer.

Why Are Design-Related Tasks Often Difficult?

The difficulty in explaining design-related tasks is often due to a breakdown in ways of thinking about the project. Of course, this isn’t true across the board, but creative types usually excel in left-brain thinking, while business owners tend to lean more towards right-brain thinking.

This difference in approaching and describing projects and processes can lead to a lot of frustration on both ends.


However, it doesn’t have to be this way. Through clear communication and understanding how different minds perceive a project, you’ll make the entire process much easier and more achievable.

We offer a few of our favorite tips below.

How to Work Better With Designers and Creatives

Like we mentioned above, communication is everything. Also, don’t expect the first design to be absolutely perfect. Like everything, the creative process is based on iteration and feedback.

1. Create Well-Defined Goals

If you don’t know what you want, then it’s going to be hard to communicate what work you want done. Makes sense, right?

Make sure you have a clear idea of what you want before you reach out to a designer.

For instance, if you want a logo, then spend time finding logos you like and highlight what elements you like in each design. Get clear on the result you’re looking for and try to provide tangible examples.

2. Provide Full Project Scope

It’s not enough to say, “I like Apple’s logo, make me one that’s similar.” Set your creative up for success by giving them the full project context.

For example, what are the goals of the project? How does this design project fit into your business goals?

To get the most out of your design, provide as much context and information as possible.

3. Create Timelines and Deliverables

Creative projects can stretch out into infinity if you let them.

Remember that design projects take time and often undergo multiple iterations, so plan accordingly. As you lay out the goals of your project, try to break the project down into specific timelines, which include certain deliverables and room for feedback.

Break down larger projects into short tasks that have a single achievable outcome. This will also help to sustain project momentum.

Often, you’ll be working with a designer that has multiple projects going on at once, so create a reasonable timeline for the work to be completed.

4. Provide Specific Feedback

When giving feedback, you need to be as clear as possible. Don’t just say, “I don’t like this,” or, “Can you make it more alive?”

Get very specific about what you don’t like, or what you’d like to see instead.

Do you dislike the color? Does the design clash with your existing brand identity?

Once again, this comes back to having a clear picture of what you want the end result to look like.

How to Explain Your Design to Automation Agency

If you’re working with an Automation Agency designer, then we offer a few tips for easily communicating your project goals.

1. Give Specific Working Examples

Most designers and creatives are visual creatures.

You can talk and write about the project and your goals, but it might not really hit home until you can provide a few working examples.

If you’re creating a Facebook ad campaign, then provide live examples (or screenshots), of ads that you currently like and would love to model. Highlight what features of the ad you particularly enjoy. For instance, do you like their font choice? The style of image they used? Or, the copy they used?

If you’re redesigning your homepage, provide examples of existing websites you like and point out why you like them.


2. Consider Using Screencasts

Screencasts can be a really great tool for both describing what elements of the project you enjoy and providing direct, specific feedback.

You can use a screencast tool like Screencast-O-Matic, Jing, or Snagit to open up an existing project and create overlay text that points to what elements you want to see in your project.

Working with a creative or designer doesn’t have to be difficult. By following the tips above you’ll increase the chances of a seamless and successful project.

About The Author

Carl Taylor

Carl Taylor is the Founder & CEO of Automation Agency. For the past 10 years Carl has been building businesses and marketing them online through the use of Sales Funnels, Email Marketing Automation, Landing Pages, and Wordpress Websites. Carl is also a #1 author and highly sought after speaker and consultant whose work has impacted thousands of businesses across various industries worldwide.