John Locklair, President and Creative Director for Studio Seven Designworks, Inc. grew up in Charleston, SC and has been active in the design field for over 30 years. With an educational background in design, business, marketing and psychology, he worked his way up through several ad agencies, design firms and printing companies before launching Studio Seven Designworks, Inc. in 1995.
In the past two decades, John has added website development and photography to the list of professional services offered. He continues to grow and focus on emerging technologies and marketing trends to be able to provide the best package of professional marketing services to Studio Seven’s clients.
How We Work Together
We know that working with an organization such as ours for the first time often prompts a few questions. How successful will we be in interpreting your needs? How can we do it most effectively? …most efficiently? How much will it cost?
Our Fee Structure
Like all service organizations our invoices are based on the time we invest in a project. Currently we bill our time at $95 per hour. We always provide a detailed proposal and estimate for approval before starting. We adhere to our estimates unless project specifications change.
Laying The Foundation
The first thing we do after being assigned a project is schedule information-gathering meetings between our creative team and your key staff. We are interested not only in scheduling, budget and job specifications, but also in your preferences, target audience, and objectives. Although this process can be somewhat time-consuming, it is also crucially important. It will help you sharpen your focus and objectives, and it will help us ensure that what we produce is not only creatively excellent, but strategically targeted.
Developing The Right Ideas
Despite popular misconceptions, good creative work doesn’t often come in a flash of inspiration; usually it comes from directed trial and error. This is why we also need to take the time to consider several concepts, work them through, try them out. Then revise them. In addition, there are usually some practical and functional ends we need to tie up before submitting our ideas — sub-contractor availability, printing estimates, scheduling requirements, etc.
All this, plus the need to schedule our workflow in a businesslike fashion, means that we normally ask for up to two weeks, depending on the job’s complexity, before we submit our rough concepts for your review. Of course, if you have a rush project or deadline pressure we can adjust our workflow and timing accordingly.
It is our experience that it is best if we first present our rough concepts to your project manager and just one or two others. This ensures that we all stay focused on the problem and are not distracted by too many personal opinions.
After presenting, we’ll ask for comments. The more objective and specific you can be, the better we will be able to respond. Comments are our input for revising the rough concepts into a finished one. Revision normally takes us about a week, and we schedule a second presentation shortly thereafter.
From the input at this second presentation meeting further minor refinements are made as necessary. We also finalize the production timetable, and the scheduling of additional services such as photography or illustration.
Ensuring Your Satisfaction
We recommend the finished layout be routed to the appropriate decision makers for fact and detail checking only, reserving stylistic and subjective decisions to your project manager. To avoid confusion, it is also important that all communication with us come from the project manager.
During the course of the project, we keep your project manager informed of our progress. Activities that will affect the schedule or budget are identified in writing. Our goal is to keep your project moving ahead quickly, smoothly, and cost-effectively; to make sure that we’ll produce even better results than you hired us for.