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Amie Baker Creative is a boutique graphic design studio focused on helping businesses and their brands through visual identities, print design and web design.


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Coming From a Place of Change

room to growToday I find myself in a new place. My son started Kindergarten. I’ll spare you the mommy feelings and share what that means to my business. I imagined when this day came years ago I would be posting a selfie here with a glass of champagne celebrating my achievement of being a successful momprenuer. I don’t quite feel that spark yet. It is covered up with those mommy feelings still. What it means is that I achieved something that felt so hard and almost impossible so many years ago and now today I couldn’t imagine life another way.

I’m here to tell you to allow yourself the chance to prove yourself- to yourself. What if today you decided to finally do something different this time? In the last 2 weeks have you set goals to create the change you want in your business? There is never a perfect time to take the chances you need to take for your business to be able to sustain itself. There is only the perfect moment when you change your focus and step out of your own way and start making things happen.

I’m taking this week of change to look at my business, set some new growth goals and look forward to the next milestone. Join me!

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Hello September!

helloseptI join in with the craziness of fall. Actually, I join in on the craziness of most things because I’ll use any excuse to have a theme, celebrate something or decorate for something! However, fall is food for my creative soul. It seems like a new start each year where I find myself experiencing the most creative growth. I guess that is part of the beauty of living in the PNW. I can crack my office window and hear the rain, light a yummy smelling candle and pick a Pandora station and just like I’m off in my own world and my creativity becomes an addiction. So bring on the pumpkin everything, and a few stormy days and stay tuned for fun projects to come to light!


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How To Speak Visually

MOOD BOARD DESIGN

I often hear from clients that they are having a hard time telling me what it is that they have in their head for their expectations on visual outcome. It can quickly become frustrating when you are trying to tell your designer in words and have it come out off target when translated visually. So what do you do?

Mood boards are magic, I promise. Take a look at this post in the archives to learn more about what a mood board is.

When you are having a hard time putting your thoughts into words to tell anyone, even your business partner then you need to take a different approach. Spend time gathering images off the internet that you’ve loved. Save those postcards you’ve gotten in the mail that made sense, take note of copy you enjoyed because it sounded great, pull those color swatches in the paint store because it is the perfect coral for your logo. Do all these things and compile them into a single image that you can look at and really see how all of these things you love visually work together once they are living in the same space together.

Once you have it all together, you may find that your love for glitter doesn’t belong in your brand, or you’ll find that it absolutely does. Visual clarity and focus will start to form. Take the time to do this and if you don’t have the interest to do this yourself, I can do it for you! Email me and we’ll start to pull it together.

Once you have a visual mood board it will be helpful for any designer that you choose to move forward with. A lot of things with design can’t be translated with words and so compiling a bunch of images together to do so proves very helpful on both sides with getting you up and running quicker and easier.


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Do You Know How To Measure Marketing Success?

marketing successHave you ever struggled to know if a campaign has worked for you? Do you struggle to figure out where your clients come from? These are important things to know and define for your business. Here are a few ways you can track your marketing efforts:

  • Google Analytics: Make sure it is installed properly so you are able to track links that you put out into the world and then be able to review their success.
  • Direct Mail: Use a unique URL that you ask recipients to visit to learn more or get special offer. Track that URL to see how many people followed your call to action.
  • Location Based Brochures: Use a specific phone number on the brochure that is only listed on that specific brochure offering, track those calls.
  • Offer Codes: Vary your special offer codes in order to track where the most uses are coming from to help better plan future campaigns.
  • Ask! Sometimes the hardest thing to do is simply ask where they heard about you, your business or your service. After you ask, you might find you can follow up with a referring outlet and thank them for their word of mouth and offer continued incentives for referrals.

Where you are putting your effort, make sure to put your attention into making sure you can track it.


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Client Experience :: Secrets of Print Shops

With my recent move (more here), we’ve had to fill out countless warranty registration cards and mail them in. I filled them all out and let me tell you how frustrating it is to have to fill in the model number or other product specific information on those postcards when I know in my mind they could have done it for me. I’m talking about variable printing. A magical solution to printing a wide range of information within the same exact template. For example, those warranty cards could have been pre-filled in for me and only a couple were. These are the things that challenge my mind with my clients now to find ways I can make their lives easier by the use of print technology that isn’t widely known with small business owners.

In simple terms, it is magic, variable printing lets you control content that prints in one print run with several variances. Imagine having a product line that needs warranty cards returned and having them all come back legible for you and allows you to speed up processing time.

If you have 3 models, traditionally you’ll need to supply 3 print files if you are pre-filling data for each one.  That is 3 projects to manage. 3 email strings. 3 everything. Variable printing allows you to set fields within the design file to supply 1 file. You’ll accompany that file with a date file that holds the key on what to print where. That likely sounds more intimidating than it actually is so don’t let that fool you. You now have 1 project to manage, 1 email string, 1 everything. Your printer will even shrink wrap, pack and label the different versions for you. Even though it will take a bit more time upfront prepping a data file, it will save you so much time overall.

Give me a shout with questions about a project you have interest in for applying variable data and tips on how to make it work for you. Most commonly this process is best paired with direct mail, invitations, fundraiser marketing and sales presentations.

Here is a handy visual to break it down:

variable printing-01-01


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Bitesize Marketing Tips

bitesize-marketingFriday is here and I’ve got a few simple tips to share that are common things I run into from time to time with start-ups that might be handy tidbits if you are just dipping your toes into this whole crazy marketing world.
  • You are not able to use save images you find on the internet at your leisure, you’ll need to purchase stock art to avoid copyright infringement.
  • Make sure your logo works in black and white to ensure it will be able to display across several mediums and scale in size properly.
  • Comic Sans font is frowned upon in the design community 🙂
  • If you lay all your pieces out in front of you, they should all have the same feeling for brand consistency.