Deb and I worked together at a newspaper in Chicago, Illinois. I was a staff photographer and she was the lead designer overseeing the entire design staff.
I left the newspaper and quickly started my own business, Kevin Weinstein Photography. 8 years pass, we are beginning a terrible recession, and I am itching to shake things up. A long time had passed since I stopped to reflect on my growth. The identity I chose when I first started up my business didn't feel right. My style, goals and voice had changed.
Deb and I got reconnected through Facebook which led me to ask her if she would be willing to help me articulate my vision into print, web, and marketing collateral. Recession aside, I wanted to face this beast head on.
I knew from day one that Deb would do a fantastic job. She has always been uber talented and gifted. I felt 100 percent secure she would offer my company an innovative look that stood out from the norm.
I needed a lot from Deb: logo, brand identity, website overhaul, marketing promo pieces, magazine ads, business cards, letterhead, envelopes, thank you cards, custom DVD packaging, presentation folders, folio inserts describing my services and other collateral such as custom stickers.
No problem. Right?
I have no idea what goes on behind the scenes, but she always delivered on time, constantly delivered solid work, provided me with materials I am certain she sweat over with my high demands. But Deb is so professional and one set at a time, she dropped incredible works of art each and every time.
Deb is efficient, able to juggle multiple clients and still provide top notch customer service, quick email response, and deadlines met with precision. Deb took into consideration my target market, gregarious personality, slightly conservative streamlined business approach and created a seamless package.
She did not meet my expectations. She exceeded them. I had no idea the final result would look and feel like this.
One important note is to allow Deb to do her job. There were a few times I challenged her vision on a few rounds of collateral. However, when she disagreed, she was thoughtful and thorough about why that was not a good route to take. A few times I found myself still disagreeing with her, but I kept telling myself she is a designer. She knows her job and the field well enough to know when something will work or not, and why. In the end, without fail, I was blown away.
Deb has given me a new sense of pride for my company. The fresh new look of my business has inspired me in ways I did not know existed. With her efforts, my business has taken a HUGE turn beyond my wildest dreams. The entire package from my logo, business card design, the web site, marketing materials and magazine ad she created took my company to a whole new level. The general consensus about my new brand has been 100 percent positive.
Because of her talent, I am opening up my first studio and finally moving my home office downtown Chicago. There is absolutely no way I could have ever consider this leap before working with Deb. I have raised my prices by 30 percent per shoot, and the bookings are coming faster than I ever imagined. Even in a recession.
At the same time, my ad and collateral have peaked the interest of several high-end wedding planners and I have booked 4 jobs that are 300 percent more than what I was charging before Deb took this job.
Small steps lead to big steps. And the change is here.
The project Deb worked on was huge. It took us about a year from start to finish. And at times it was agonizing. But in the end, it was worth every frustrating moment. I will miss the highs of her emails coming in with a presentation of our next product. I will also miss the boxes from her printing contractors delivering the materials to my door.
I am certain I will need her services more as my business moves in this new direction. And I am looking forward to calling her again and again.
Deb, thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your talent is worth gold.