The Value of Good Design
When Parliament announced their £50,000 brand refresh early last week it wasn’t a surprise for us at Tim Marner HQ when the closed minded newspapers jumped on it and branded it a waste of money. Sadly, it’s something that’s become a reoccurring trend in the design industry and is just another name on a list of high profile brands which have been ostracized.
We’ve put some visuals below this post to show off the new identity in all its glory, we actually think it’s a really nice outcome and as taxpayers believe it’s worth every penny. But, why is it that generally that the public don’t have any appreciation of the value of good design? For us an analogy that springs to mind is something about a carpenter, a squeaky floor, a nail, and a bill for 500 quid.
Did the customer really just pay 500 quid for a nail?
The answer in short is no, the customer payed for the carpenters years of experience and their ability to fix the problem in front of them with the best outcome. Why rip up the whole floor and replace it when you can replace one nail?
It’s exactly the same with design, you’re not paying £50,000 for a logo, although it is part of the outcome. You’re paying £50,000 for the best professional solution to your problem. The problem in this case was the dated identity didn’t work very well on digital and identity wise it was becoming a free for all. It didn’t need something brand new and completely different because it had a solid foundations and history. What it needed was refreshing and refining.
What we Think?
Despite this in the design industry we tend to see it time and time again, a client comes in and believes they’re a designer reborn. As a general rule of thumb they have grand ideas which aren’t practical, don’t work in the real world and they see you as a blunt tool. It’s a constantly frustrating part of the industry we’re in that just doesn’t seem to happen in any other industry. Imagine you took your car into the garage and started telling the trained mechanic how to fix it? Or you got a bricklayer to build a wall and started telling them how to place the bricks? The car would break and the wall would fall down.
People see design as something expandable that anyone can do, that’s why when people see figures being branded like £50,000 they start calling it out. It doesn't help when papers brandish it, "a logo". If you look at the full project there is so much more to it than that.But crucially what they’re not seeing is the years of experience that goes into creating a design that doesn’t fall over or break when it goes into the real world.
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