Small design companies should save you a hell of a lot of money by the hour as well as days or weeks of headaches.
Simple really. You won’t get the ‘suits’ that schmooze you and act as your point of contact. That suit will have never sat in front of a Mac in anger, won’t have opened a layout pad to sketch before and certainly won’t have pontificated over the merits of a traditional serif typeface against a more contemporary web based don’t before. When you choose a small design firm over a large agency, you are bypassing several (needless) levels of management structure and you’ll be talking to the actual people ‘doing’ the work. These people – the designers – are the ones who make the difference. And that is why we believe that it is vital a client can talk directly too them. There are other reasons as well, so we put together our 5 top reasons to use a small design company (just like us!)…
1) Cutting out the middle men
As above, no more ‘suits’. You will be talking to the designer doing your work. You will be mitigating the risk of Chinese whispers of brief info or feedback getting lost in translation. A small company won’t have an account manager, a producer, a senior creative or art director to pass work through before it hits the client’s desk. Smaller outfits will be more efficient. Period.
2) Saving money in YOUR pocket
The massive agencies that grace the capital and other big city centres here in the UK, generally operate out of quirky buildings that have some memorable and often needless focal points on show for the world to see. Huge tropical fish tanks, open bars for staff every Friday, a huge old factory building converted into a contemporary workspace… For a team of 6 full time staff. All of these things are ultimately paid for by the client. Compare the hourly rate of a large agency with an inhouse bowling alley, against a small design firm with a modest office and a £50 per head budget for their Christmas do. All of the fancy trimmings DO NOT guarantee better creative output.
3) Two (or three) heads are always better than one or ten
Freelancers are great. Good ones are always cheaper than a small design firm. But good freelancers are also busy a lot of the time and a big percentage have a tendency to spend a big chunk of time chilling on a beach in Thailand for 3 months at a time. A small firm gives greater reliability than a freelancer does for when you need something turning round fast.
Two (or three) heads are also better than ten (or ten plus) in a large agency as jobs can be communicated or briefed quickly and put into action faster. No need for several sets of eyes to cast over and ok a proposal, estimate, quote and invoice. Just brief the studio and crack on – paperwork can be sorted out later. Flexible working is just great eh?!
4) Access to a highly motivated team
A small design company will have a set of talented individuals that are motivated by a desire to do well for you. They aren’t a small fish in a big pond, they’re a big part of a well oiled machine that is working hard to turn around great work for clients. If the people in a business are happy, they will generally be more productive and motivated and in design terms that will mean better creative output.
Do you want your next project passed down the line to the latest studio intern or apprentice? Or do you want it put into a skilled, experienced team of three qualified designers? Easy choice.
5) You’ll be treated like royalty
A small company should always deliver great customer service. For a smaller design firm, every client counts and when you find them polite, helpful and always willing to go that extra mile for you, it is because they really appreciate your business!
Larger agencies tend to have two or three flagship client accounts that bankroll the operation. So anything in addition is a bonus and not as important as the big hitters that are paying mega bucks for studio time. Consider this when choosing your next design supplier – do you want to be a number on a spreadsheet or do you want to be appreciated as a valued client?
So there you have a our 5 key factors in why working with a small design company is better than working with a massive big name agency.
Why not talk to us about your next design brief? We are small, dedicated and focused on great design for all of our clients!