Lesson 2.1 – Analyze and Synthesize: Research-Driven Design

Quiz Due Date: Wednesday, February 17, 2015 at noon

Lesson 2.1 begins our very first design project, which is to design a business card and letterhead. This design project is due Wednesday, March 2, 2016 at noon. This week we will be focusing on our first piece, the business card. Over the media attachments, you will notice an extra video on InDesign. This is just a quick refresher in case you’ve forgotten anything over the last couple of weeks. I walk through the following:

As mentioned in our last post, the way to be most effective with PR publications is to understand your public, so we are going to also walk through how to effectively complete design research.

Make sure you allot yourself plenty of time for this lesson. By the end of it you will have written four blog posts, created three Pinterest boards, and started a draft for your business card. But before we get started…

Some tips on business cards:

1. Consider your essential text content.

Every business needs your name, your job title, and some form of contact information. The appropriate contact information can vary based on your organization. At minimum, you want to include a phone number and an email address. If your organization is strictly online or you want to drive traffic to the website, make sure to include the website URL. If you have a physical location, an address is most likely necessary. If your organization is very socially conscious or holds their mission in high regard, maybe consider putting the mission statement on the back of the card.

2. Legibility is key.

If you can’t read the text on a business card, it is essentially useless. Make sure your font isn’t too small. The best way to check for too small of font is to print your document out and actually look at it. Also make sure that your contrast is high. If you are using a dark background color, make the text white or light (and vice versa).

3. Keep your art simple.

Remember, business cards are fairly small so detailed images won’t be very legible. This isn’t the type of piece for a photo collage. Stick with your company logo and your organizations primary colors.

Assignments for Lesson 2.1:
1. Pick an organization and locate their logo
2. Locate the organization logo
3. Research: The Analysis-Synthesis Bridge Model
4. Analyzing your organization (Blog post required)
5. Competitor Analysis: Create a Pinterest Board
6. Competitor Analysis: Blog Post
7. Build a Communications Strategy: Blog Post
8. Visualizing Your Communications Strategy: Inspiration and Mood Boards
9. Begin your design: Setup your InDesign document.
10. One more blog post: Post your draft
11. Don't forget to take the quiz!