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Design, Die or AI

Design, Die or AI

No amount of artificial intelligence can be effective without a human at some point taking the business objectives and marketing messages and turning them into something that resonates with the audience it is intended for. But AI is for another day.

Here at Gravity our lead designer Alex gets involved with designing collateral from websites and e-newsletters to print and exhibition stands, but what is the value of great design when there are ready made tools available such as Canva and other image generators. We took a few moments to chat to her about how design can influence decision making.

What is Graphic Design?

In its simplest terms, design is the art of combining image and text for print and digital media, it’s more than just making things look nice. The clients brief informs what the objectives of the design are, such as to attract audiences, to encourage people to make a purchase or to communicate a key message.

Creating a good design is accomplished in a few steps and carefully thought out with a clear objective. The first thing we do is understand who the intended audience is for the finished design and what you want the recipient to do with the information presented to them?

We then refer to the brand guidelines, if available, and use the colours, font, and tone of voice. The next step is to identify the best format to use and be conscious of what channel this will be used on – website, social media, e-newsletters, leaflet, brochures and many more.

Good design makes things look professional, as well as ensuring that the context delivers effective communication, conveying info, visual identity, target marker and way more. Can you believe all this is involved in just one design concept? Design work really is hard!

Why is good design so important?

As humans we process images and visuals much faster than text, in fact 60,000 times faster! Capturing and holding attention is essential and something that catches our eye can make us stop and listen long enough for us to take on the message it is conveying.

90% of information that gets transmitted to the brain is visual in nature, so this is why good design is so important.

Why is good design important for business?

Design is a form of communication between your business and your audience. Brand consistency is key, but that is probably for another day! Websites, e-newsletters, brochures and all other materials that are designed represent your business – and first impressions matter.

If you’re in business, you’re in the business of graphic design. All businesses want to be credible, consistent and competitive. This is where design, aligned with the right marketing channels can demonstrate that your business has a story worth telling.

You get one shot at impressing a potential customer. If your website looks rubbish or doesn’t tell a story, the visitor will quickly shut the window and look elsewhere.

The modern business world is hyper-competitive with information and opportunities whizzing by everywhere we look, therefore, good quality design is a must-have tool for your marketing toolbox to make way through the noise.

Why is design often undervalued?

Design can often be perceived as just throwing together some text and pictures, but it is so much more. Good design starts with a thought process. When a business has a great offer, design can bring those products, services and events to life.

The value is added when the creative mind sets to work on unfurling the messages and then creating a visual that will stop people in their tracks, just for a second, to read those messages. 

One misconception is that logos need to communicate something about their business, but contrary to this, many long-standing brands primary purpose is for identification with a clear message and brand values behind them, and these are the ones that stand the test of time. Take Apple, Nike and FedEx as examples that we are all familiar, they are clever and strong by the way they have been designed but also the way they are applied.

Another misconception is that designs can be whipped up quickly, it’s just a home page, or a quick poster design. Designers are bursting with natural creative ability but getting it right takes a little more time than half an hour in front of a screen. Design time is often misunderstood and an idea is hard to charge for. Who knows when it will click into place but this time spent getting it right is infinitely more valuable. Time spent in research and creative direction is time well spent.

Other thoughts of a creative mind

Yes, we can quickly come up with logo ideas but only if we understand the business, audience, fit and future goals which helps place creative direction in place first. It is important that the client is part of the process – we can then visually translate the vision of what the client wants to achieve.

A lot of what we do creates a subconscious and associative reaction in the viewer. Emotional connection to a piece of work is more important than the viewer understanding the ‘why’ behind the design.

AI vs Human

Creativity cannot be hardwired. AI design tools are trained with man-made datasheets, but emotions make a difference. AI wouldn’t understand the feeling we get from an image which is what leads us creatives to the right final creative message. But this is for another day…

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More Than Digital Marketing Support For MTLL

More Than Digital Marketing Support For MTLL

National franchise, More Than Loft Ladders, which specialises in loft storage solutions, continues to go from strength to strength and Gravity Digital has supported the company throughout its expansion journey.

The Gravity team started working with entrepreneur Liam Hobbs when he was building his own More Than Loft Ladders franchise covering Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and South Yorkshire to develop his social media presence. The proposition has grown over the past eight years to also include website development, marketing support, SEO and PPC campaigns.

With a string of awards under his belt, Liam’s success in running his own franchise operation convinced him that he wanted to support others to do the same and, in late 2022, Liam bought the More Than Loft Ladders national franchise.

Again, the Gravity team have been right alongside him – developing the national franchise website and providing digital marketing support and training for the various franchise operators across the UK.

The franchisees include Liam’s wife Kelly who continues to run and expand the local operations including opening a High Street office and showroom in Long Eaton.

MTLL & ‘Big Build for Children in Need’

To celebrate the first anniversary of taking over the national franchise, Kelly, Liam and the local team have also been involved in the annual ‘Big Build for Children in Need’. They, along with hundreds of other trades people from across the region, provided nine days of voluntary labour at Treetops Hospice in Risley. 

The project was closely followed by the BBC cameras and is due to be aired as part of the annual fundraising campaign this November.

Liam explained: “Gravity Digital have worked with us since the early days of our operation and has been an integral part of our company’s expansion in the local area.

“Having learnt a great deal about running and growing a business, I was delighted when the opportunity presented itself to buy the national franchise.

“With Kelly taking over the local operations, I have now been able to focus my efforts on supporting the current and future More Than Loft Ladders franchise owners across the UK to achieve their goals.

“With the support of a range of business partners, including Gravity Digital, we have developed enhanced support packages ranging from accounting to marketing that are available to franchise holders.

“I have also learnt how to deal personally with juggling business and family life and I am keen to support other franchise holders on a personal level to ensure their mental wellbeing.”

Liam continued: “As a franchise business, we have built our reputation over the years by offering the full service and, as the name suggests – we are more than a loft ladder company. 

“Although this is obviously an important feature, we also install hatches, part or full loft boarding insulation, lighting and smoke alarms to transform dark and forgotten lofts into usable space.

“Loft storage conversions are a growing market with homeowners keen to put wasted space at the top of their homes to good use either for storage or, for example, a hobby space.

“It also makes financial sense to insulate a loft rather than see money on heating bills literally fly through the roof.

“Furthermore, the volatile mortgage market also means that many people are more likely to expand the living space they have now at an affordable price rather than moving and taking on bigger payments.

“I therefore continue to actively recruit hard working and ambitious tradespeople who are keen to take the plunge and start their own business supported by us.

“With a solid reputation and growing customer demand, I am confident that our growth plans will be achieved.”

For more information about More Than Loft Ladders, please visit

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