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Have you ever watched one of those home makeover shows? You know the scenario. The homeowners have decorated or remodeled their house all by themselves. After awhile, they realize that what they did is unprofessional, it doesn’t work, it’s not what they want, it’s not what they need, it’s ugly, or they just flat out despise it. So, they hire an expert designer to help.

After meeting with the family to find out their wants, needs, desires and dreams, the expert takes that information and goes to work, completely making over the house.

The final results are amazing. The differences are like night and day. The homeowners are surprised and utterly astonished. Some laugh and some even cry, because right in front of their eyes, they see what they never imagined possible. It’s what they want, it’s what they need, it’s what they were trying to do themselves, but simply couldn’t.

What does all of this have to do with graphic design and marketing?

Unfortunately, most small business owners, like the homeowners, do all their own graphic design and marketing themselves. They design the logo for their small business… themselves. They design the stationery for their small business… themselves. They write and design the brochure for their small business… themselves. They design and build the web site for their small business… themselves. Typically, they do ALL of the graphic design and marketing for their small business… you guessed it… themselves.

It’s unfortunate. Because the results of doing all of this… themselves… is similar to those experienced by the homeowners in the makeover shows. The graphic design and marketing materials they have created look unprofessional, they don’t work, they don’t get results, they look homemade and they aren’t functional. Simply put, they’re amateurish.

Sound familiar?

What should you do? Let’s reconsider the home makeover shows, and determine what the homeowners did right. You can learn something from the homeowners and apply this to your small business.

First. They realize that what they have done themselves, simply isn’t working. They’re frustrated that what they have done does not work anymore. They know that they need a change.

Second. They realize that they are not the experts in this particular area. They know that they need expert designer help to fix what they have done to make it functional, appealing and successful.

Third. They meet with the expert designer to discuss their wants, needs and desires. They express exactly what they want to accomplish. They also admit that what they have tried to do… themselves… doesn’t work.

Fourth. They let the expert get to work. They trust that they will get the results they want and desire. They know the finished product will far exceed what they could have ever done themselves.

Fifth. They get to see and experience the finished result, which is a beautiful, functional, valuable, contemporary, awesome solution that works and gives them the results they wanted to accomplish in the first place.

When it comes to creating and executing the graphic design and marketing materials for your small business, the same results can and will happen for you. But, you have to hire an expert to give your business an extreme makeover.

When the expert is done, the graphic design and marketing materials for your small business will be attractive, professional, beautiful, successful, what you want, what you need and it will accomplish the goals you are trying to achieve.

There is only one catch: you have to stop doing everything yourself.

If you are doing or have done all of the graphic design and marketing materials for your small business… all by yourself… it’s time to call in an expert.

Like the homeowners, chances are you’ll be surprised and completely amazed. Right in front of your eyes, you will see results that you always wanted, but could not achieve yourself.

This Sales & Marketing article was written by Jeanna Pool on 7/18/2005

Jeanna Pool is President of CATALYST creative, inc., located in Denver, Colorado. She helps small business owners who are really good at what they do, but struggle to market their services effectively to attract more clients on a consistent basis. She can be contacted at or 303.380.9100.