Show Your Growth: The Case for Investing More in Good Design As Your Business Scales Up

Often, small business startups in the Philippines can’t afford to allow a big portion of the budget to good graphic design. But as your operations scale up, there is a need for outdoor signage, an online presence, and remarkable logo, among others. Here’s why you should consider reinvesting in professional graphic design to suit the needs of your growing business.

Startups run on tight constraints

Starting a small business requires time, effort, and dedication – often far more than a regular employee would invest in their full-time job. You have to draft your initial project study and analyze the fundamentals of the business plan. Then you file all the necessary permits and clearances, cobble up the required funding, and draft a team of trusted people to start things out on the right path.

Today more than ever, business owners are aware of the importance of strong branding and marketing. Yet amid all the considerations, compromises, and delegation of responsibility in the formative phase of your business, it’s easy to find that design gets bumped down in priority. This leads to solid business ideas possibly not reaching their target market, not quite hitting ideal goals, or just not achieving their full potential overall.

Still, if you’ve got a good concept and fundamentally sound business structure, you’ll survive, and thrive. And this leads to growth. So how do you move forward?

Establish your footing – then do an OODA loop

Self-improvement gurus often preach about the importance of the principle “Observe, Orient, Decide, Act” – the so-called OODA Loop. This strategic concept is used by top organizations and businesses to help them learn on the fly, and thrive in uncertain situations.

At its core, the OODA Loop works because it constantly makes you evaluate your mental models of how to operate. Instead of being stuck with the operations framework you started out with – a framework that might have been constrained by practical limitations, such as time and budget, that may no longer be a limiting factor – using the OODA Loop empowers you to rethink your models, adjust how you operate and look out for possible improvements.

Reinvest in design to communicate your growth

When considering how to take your business to the next level, most people would focus on stepping up existing operations – ramping up production of a key product, or expanding into new niches in the market. However, if you thoughtfully apply the OODA Loop to every aspect of your business, it should extend to branding – and you may realize that the initial design for your company, from the logo to your website and presentation templates, is in fact just as badly in need of reinvestment.

Your marketing team may have the data to point you in a certain direction when it comes to production or expansion, but they can also help to assess if your brand is still on point in communicating what your company does, or stands for. Professional marketing experts don’t just do analytics but also keep up to date with trends and collaborate with designers. There is no need to feel constrained and stick with your initial design if an opportunity exists to revamp your business aesthetic.

As most project managers can attest to, the so-called Project Management Triangle often constrains startups in terms of budget – and in the case of design, this means you may have started out with logos and branding that look cheap and rushed. As you grow your business, take your branding and design up a level too and observe the improvements that come with it.

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