Your relationship with your design partner is crucial. But like any other relationship, it can suffer from poor communication. So today, I’m going to act like your couples counselor of sorts and shed a little light on five crucial things your design partner wishes you knew. Read on…
Today’s question comes from Rick R. who asks, “I’m really looking forward to starting my new job and getting to know the designers there. Is there anything I should know to ease the getting-used-to-working-together process?”
As with any other relationship, it will take time to get to know your design partners and make sure the two of your work styles gel. But there are still a few things you can keep in mind that will make the “gelling” process go faster. So, without further ado, here are five things your design partners wish you knew.
1. They want your feedback. Many newer copywriters are hesitant to comment on the design of a project because they don’t feel like they know enough about design. And, yes, they probably don’t.
But that doesn’t mean that they don’t have thoughts and ideas. As long as feedback is given respectfully and humbly, your designer wants to hear it. They need you to bounce ideas off of, so give them that chance.
2. They don’t want you to tell them how to design. Pursuant to that last tip, your designer wants feedback—but they don’t need you to tell them how to design. When you send through your copy doc, don’t include design direction. If you have ideas, great! Talk about them. But don’t think that your design ideas are necessarily the best ones.
Just as you wouldn’t want your designer to tell you what copy to write, you shouldn’t try to tell your design partner how to design.
3. They understand copy, too. Just because your design partner is primarily versed in design, doesn’t mean that he or she can’t offer valuable feedback on your copy. Especially if he or she has a decent amount of experience, they’ve picked up a few things about copy and can offer some suggestions.
Let your design partner be someone you bounce copy ideas off of, and listen to their ideas and feedback. It’s likely that these conversations will help you to write even better versions of your copy.
4. Sometimes your copy just will not fit. I know: You worked hard to make your copy perfect before you even sent it to your design partner. And design can be flexible. But remember that copy needs to be flexible, too. Sometimes the copy you’ve written just won’t fit within a design no matter how hard the designer tries, and you need to be willing to change it.
Now, there should be some give and take too, of course; it can’t just be you making all of the changes. But you’ll find that there are some scenarios when you have to adjust your copy. It’s not a matter of your designer not working with you—it’s just a matter of your copy not fitting in the design.
5. They want to work with you, not just get your copy doc. The best work comes from a solid collaboration between copywriters and designers—and, chances are, your designer knows that.
There are some copywriters that prefer just to write a copy doc, send it to the designer, and never talk about it again. But that leads to shoddy work, and it’s also a pain for the designer. How are they supposed to incorporate your copy if they can’t talk with you about it? You designer wants to collaborate with you. Don’t make them beg.
Your turn! Have you had a great relationship with a design partner? What’s been part of the magic? Let us know in the comments below!