Generalists Are Boring | Sourcing Brand Relevant Graphic Design

We average 85 choices for every logo we CROWDSOURCE from 99 Designs

We average 85 choices for every logo we CROWDSOURCE from 99 Designs

Graphic design is integral in the marketing of every business. Your design can convey what you do, who you are, and offer the benefits of brand development.

We know of three ways to source graphic design for your website, CTA buttons, print advertisements, sell sheets, logos and pretty much any graphic elements needed to set your brand apart from your competition.


The problem with using a marketing agency’s in-house generalist is that the designs are often average. It's not that the designer isn't good at his job, it's that every designer naturally gravitates towards a specific aesthetic. If you're seeking a CTA button that’s a caricature or illustration and the designer just loves creating web 2.0 gradient style buttons their design may not live up to your expectations. 

This leads to a back and forth with the designer that requires additional time and time is money. 

Sourcing a Designer on Portfolio Websites Like Dribbble and UpWork

Dribble and Elance are great websites to search for a designer that can create your graphic identity. Considered portfolio sites, you can view thousands of designer’s work to find an aesthetic that works for you.

Dribble is a showcase site where thousands of designers display their work. You can search by location (worldwide) skills, availability and other criteria, and then negotiate and hire designers directly. Designers set up a portfolio style webpage where you can preview their work. Businesses can join as a “scout” and then interact, like, and follow them, much like Facebook.

Elance is a site with an enormous pool of freelancers featuring a variety of specialties. Over 202,000 programmers, 23,000 mobile developers and 146,000 graphic designers worldwide call Elance home. It’s the site to peruse if you’re looking to develop an app, design a website or create a brand identity. Businesses sign up for Elance, post a job (it’s free) and begin to review the many proposals that will immediately begin to appear in your inbox. Browse each members profile; see their latest work and work history, feedback rating and more. Once you’ve chosen a designer, you collaborate with them online and pay only for the work you approve.

Crowdsourcing Graphic Design on 99Designs

Crowdsourcing is the practice of obtaining services, or ideas, by soliciting contributions from a large group of people. 99Designs and Swiftly are related web sites that have taken he idea of crowdsourcing to the graphic design world.

99Designs has businesses set up “contests” where designers compete for your job. Artists create free spec designs and you choose the designer you’d like to work with. It’s an excellent way to view the work of hundreds of designers who have created concepts explicitly based on your criteria. 99Designs community features thousands of designers worldwide who will compete for your job.

Swiftly’s community consists of handpicked designers from 99Designs who do a variety of less “creative” tasks, like resizing a photo or updating a business card for a flat rate. Upload your files, tell Swiftly what you’d like changed and they release the job to their community. You receive your changes in a matter of hours, download the files, approve them, and pay a flat $15.00 fee.

Getting unique graphic design doesn’t need to be a hassle or cost thousands of dollars with sites like Dribble, UpWork, 99Designs and Swiftly. These sites offer the ability choose a designer from among thousands of talented individuals worldwide. When searching for that defining graphic image for your business, it only makes sense to avoid the generalists and use one of these valuable resources.