BY Benjamin

November 25, 2020

One of the first things that a small business owner should do is to nail their branding initiatives. To be clear, creating a brand is more than just having an attractive logo. The logo should be at the bottom of the branding to-do list because it should be informed by everything that you have decided to do with your brand!

While a logo should be timeless, subtle, and remarkable, it should also strive to communicate the values of your brand. To achieve that, you must hire a competent graphic designer. But how do you do that exactly? 

Here are five steps that you should follow to find the right graphic designer for your startup business:

1. List your requirements 

What you’re looking for in a graphic designer should match your company’s needs. Besides the logo, startups will need a comprehensive brand book that details how their logo should be used. This allows for all marketing and public relations efforts to have a uniform and standardised look that helps facilitate brand recognition. 

Besides the brand book, startups may also require graphics templates for social media promotion for each social media platform. Your actual needs may differ, but you can use these as your base templates!

2. Find excellent references 

Different graphic designers will have their specialties and art styles that they are good at. To make your search for the right graphic designer easier, look for references that show the type and feel of the art that you want to achieve with your brand. 

Inspiration can be found anywhere, but it’s a good idea to start with brands that already inspire you. You can even look at what your competition is doing and try to emulate certain aspects. That being said, emphasise that you want your art to be completely original, and any references should not be copied. 

3. Set the budget 

Setting a budget is a crucial part of scouting for a suitable graphic designer. Doing this basic preparatory action helps you narrow down your choices to those that seem reasonable given your needs!

4. Contact a handful and choose the best

Once you have your list of requirements, references, and budget, you can start contacting graphic designers and shortlisting them. You’ll have to strike a balance between graphic designers that you can afford, ones that are skilled enough to deliver your requirements, and ones whose art style matches your references. Ideally, you would find someone who would have all three!

If you get stumped on this, then proceed to the next step. 

5. Consider getting a graphic design subscription 

So far, the steps discussed above have discussed the traditional route that most companies take for their logo design and branding needs. While this design works, going with a graphic design subscription instead does have certain advantages. 

Besides offering graphic design services that are on par—if not better than a lot of freelance graphic designers—design on-demand subscriptions, like the one we offer at 55 Knots, provides tailored plans that suit your needs. Instead of trying to shop around for the best deals, you can expect to pay a flat rate for unlimited design revisions!


In today’s media-saturated and competitive business landscape, it’s crucial to do everything in your power to stand out from your competition and capture the attention of your customers. By having excellent graphic design from the start, you are setting yourself up for success in the future!

55 Knots offers affordable graphic design services for people who want the same level of service for a flat fee, every time. We have three subscription options available for you to choose from that are tailored for your needs. Contact us today to learn more about our services!


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Captain of ships and commander to a crew of designers. Benjamin Williams is a creative director with over 20 years of experience working with the world’s largest brands.