Tag Archives: Design

Detroit Design

Detroit is a hard working city, with its own highs and lows; it’s a place with fantastic roots and a true creative energy.  I dove deep in all things Detroit and within just a few months I was moving my life, design studio, and job all into Detroit. Soon after, my design adventures with Franco began just a week after I had relocated my studio and living space to Corktown via Royal Oak.  I knew Franco had a long standing relationship with the city, but little did I know how quickly this PR synergy would affect my life!

My First Design Adventure: NAIAS

I began at Franco in early November; two months shy of the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) yes, the same NAIAS that our president of the United States stopped at to visit, not too bad for my first major project. The amount of work the team put into this event was both staggering and inspiring to watch and also be a part of. Just a few weeks into the project I was creating print ads, numerous graphics for social media, atrium banners, way-finding banners, and a marquee display – a whole 4,800 square feet worth of screen that would be seen on the front of Cobo Center.

During NAIAS Preview Week all of our team’s hard work paid off because as soon as you stepped off the The People Mover you were immediately surrounded by a cloud of green, blue, and steel. It was exciting seeing crowds of auto show goers walk throughout COBO letting our little green way finding banners guide them through the hallways because they stuck out like exclamation points. Our SMDI graphics were everywhere on the walls, pillars, token machines and windows, and it was very cool.

SMDI Atrium Banner Design

SMDI Atrium Banner

SMDI Wayfinding Banner Design

SMDI Wayfinding Banners

But the most rewarding moment of them all was walking outside the GMRENCEN and looking up to see that SMDI green screen I designed, now sixty times the size of the computer screen it was created on displayed on the front of COBO Center.

SMDI COBO Marquee Design

SMDI COBO Marquee

Next Up…Granite City Food & Brewery

The next big event for me was the opening of Granite City Food & Brewery in the GMRENCEN. During this opening I really got a chance to see what Franco does for our clients and how we go above and beyond to make things happen. Before the official opening date, I was given the chance to use my photography skills  to take pictures of the space for the media. Putting on that hard hat and walking through Granite City was so intriguing and just as exciting, if not more, to see those same images in the Detroit Free Press the following week.

Photographing the space was the just the start of my involvement; I was also fortunate enough to create way-finding banners, that were placed throughout the GMRENCEN, door and window graphics, kiosk marquee displays, and The 48243 IPA beer label (appropriately named after GMRENCEN’s own zip code!)

Granite City Flyer Design

Granite City Food & Brewery Beer Label Designs

As time goes on and I continue to work on projects throughout Detroit, whether it is creating social graphics for the Fisher Theatre and the upcoming performances of Matilda the Musicalor a new billboard for the The Salvation Army, I will be reminded of the strong ties that connect Franco and the city of Detroit.

Matilda the Musical Graphic Design

Matilda the Musical Graphics

In-House Designer Ashley Dupuy posing with her 48234 graphic design

Franco In-House Designer, Ashley Dupuy, Posing With Her 48234 Beer Label Graphic

Ashley DuPuy is the in-house designer at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach her at (313) 567-5093 or dupuy@franco.com. For more pictures of her Franco design journey follow her on Instagram @ashleyydupuy.

10 Reasons Why You Need to Register for TEDxDetroit Today

On Thursday, October 8th, creators, catalysts, entrepreneurs, artists, geeks, designers, thinker and doers will all flock to Detroit for the 7th Annual TEDxDetroit. Franco PR Group is excited to work with them to spread the word about this one-of-a-kind conference.

1. TEDx events are breakoffs from the larger, parent conference TED Talks. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design – three words that are practically synonymous with the Motor City.

Photos: Cobo Center, Rockin’ on the Riverfront Concert Series, Detroit Institute of Arts

Photos: Cobo Center, Rockin’ on the Riverfront Concert Series, Detroit Institute of Arts

Check, check and… check.

2. There are only 14 other TEDx conference located throughout Michigan, and as you can see TEDxDetroit is at the TOP of the list.

TEDx MI

Which could just be a coincidence, but then again, maybe not.

3. The TEDxDetroit stage has been graced by Detroit powerhouses like Quicken Loans Founder and real estate tycoon, Dan Gilbert, Slow Roll Co-Founder Jason Hall, and Hardcore Pawn star, Les Gold.

4. And this year’s line-up continues to bring the best of the best, with NASA Planetary Scientist, Dr. Cathy Olkin, Life Remodeled Founder and CEO, Dr. Chris. Lambert and President and CEO of Consumer Electronics Association, Gary Shaprio.

Photo from GMRENCEN “Reflecting A New Detroit”

Photo: GMRENCEN “Reflecting A New Detroit”

Just to name a few.

5. Oh yeah, and on top of all those great speakers – they’ve got LIVE MUSIC. With performances by America’s Got Talent finalist Alicia Michilli, Tunde OlaniranAhya SimoneTimothy OrikriShelby 5Chance MorrisDarius SimpsonScout Bostley and Britney Stoney.

6. Not to mention this year’s venue just happens to be the historic Fox Theatre.

Photo: facebook.com/foxtheatredetroit

Photo: facebook.com/foxtheatredetroit

Which is the largest TEDxDetroit venue in its seven-year history.

7. Charlie Wollborg, Chief Troublemaker at Curve Detroit and TEDxDetroit Executive Producer and Curator has been a featured speaker at several noted conferences including SXSW Interactive, Podcamp Michigan and Ignite Automotive.

Photo: twitter.com/CharlieCurve

Photo: twitter.com/CharlieCurve

So he probably knows how to put on a good show.

8. If you don’t go you’re just going to be checking Twitter for updates all day anyway.


#TEDxDetroit FOMO

9. If you register for TEDxDetroit before Sept. 21, you’ll save $15. Which you can put towards those Red Wings tickets you’ve had your eye on.

10. And if that’s not enough to get you to click the registration link. Maybe this’ll help…

Photos: facebook.com/bigalora, facebook.com/comfortcruzine, detroitstockyard.com

Photos: facebook.com/bigalora, facebook.com/comfortcruzine, detroitstockyard.com

Detroit food truck favorites like Bigalora, Heroes vs. Villain, Motor City Franks, Comfort Cruzine, Stockyard and more will be on-site at TEDxDetroit. 

 

Which TEDxDetroit speaker is on your must-see list? Share in the comments.

Alex Fulbright is a digital marketing specialist at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach her at 313-567-5085 or fulbright@franco.com. Follow her on Twitter: @AlexandriaFul and connect on LinkedIn.

Be Prepared When Working With a Design Partner

In today’s ever increasing visual world, anyone involved in promotion must venture into the realm of design, whether it’s to create a single flyer or develop a full-blown campaign.

Franco design samples

Franco works closely with clients on a wide range of design projects, many of them created completely in house. Above are a sampling of recent print materials produced for our nonprofit clients.

But what if design is not your forte? Here are a few tips for getting the best from your graphic partner:

  • Do a little soul searching. What exactly are you trying to communicate and who are you trying to reach? What is the best creative approach for your audience(s)? Are traditional print or online ads best? Does this call for a pamphlet? Would billboards do the trick? Is this an opportunity for something completely out-of-the-box?
  • Be clear. What’s the end use for this creative? How will it be distributed and how do you want your audience react to or use it? Say you’re designing a giveaway for a special event, thinking through these logistics will direct your designer’s creativity and help ensure your piece generates the results you’re intending.
  • Show and tell. Search online, skim magazines, take photographs, keep an eye on the mail . . . gather design samples that catch your eye and help you communicate specific creative elements you’d like your designer to explore. (Even sharing samples you DO NOT LIKE is helpful in keeping design on the right track.)
  • Be real. What is your budget? No sense encouraging your designer to explore a multi-part print invitation with foil imprints, die cuts and other expensive bells and whistles when an oversized postcard is all your budget can handle. A skillful designer can achieve the look and feel you need at any price point.
  • Be ready. Once you’ve agreed to a general approach, make sure to provide your designer with everything he or she needs for best results. Provide all text, images and logos at the outset so the initial design is as complete as possible.
  • Take your time. When reviewing creative, “live” with it for a bit rather than provide immediate feedback. Make sure all the information you need to communicate is there. (Glaring omissions can be easier to catch at this stage.) Are the text, images and logos given the proper emphasis in relation to one another? Will the design reproduce well? For example, is the typeface too thin or small to be legible when printed in a newspaper?
  • Be specific. What if the creative doesn’t meet your expectations? General “I don’t like it” feedback is not constructive and experience shows that by identifying the specific design elements you do not care for can turn a creative miss into a hit. Maybe changing the background color will make all the difference. How about eliminating a border or adding line art? Few design exercises are on target at first pass and require adjustments to get them right where you want them.
  • Stay focused. It’s easy to be dazzled by a spectacular design that, with additional consideration, actually doesn’t meet your communications needs because the information is lost in the art. Compromise is key to finding the proper balance between the beauty and functionality of any creative designed for promotional purposes.

So the next time design factors into your promotional plans, take some time to do your homework before reaching out to your designer. It’ll make for a smooth process…and will reap wonderfully visual rewards! What design tips have you discovered along the way?

Pat Adanti-Joy, APR, is a vice president at Franco Public Relations Group, supporting the agency’s nonprofit clients, which includes a variety of design projects. You can reach her at 313-567-5046 or joy@franco.com.