How Marketing and Design Work Together Like PB&J

February 8, 2023
Ty Nilsson

Some things are just meant to be together: Tom and Jerry; milk and cookies; thunder and lightning; peanut butter and jelly. The same goes for marketing and design. It might not be the first pair that comes to your mind, but when those two sides put aside their differences, they can create memorable and moving content. Keep reading to learn how marketing and design work together to benefit your business.

What is the Difference Between Graphic Design and Marketing? 

While there can be some cross-over between these specialties, it is their end goal that separates them the most. A graphic designer’s goal is to make content that is visually appealing, tells a story, and is memorable. A marketer’s goal is to have engaging content that leads a client to make a purchase. 

When Can Marketing and Design Work Together? 

Sometimes it can feel like these two groups of people are about as compatible as oil and water, but with a bit of work, they can pair together perfectly from concept to execution. Here are three points in the content creation process when marketing and design teams can come together to make something amazing. 

Conceptualization and Ideation

The relationship between marketing and design starts at the very beginning of the project. Both designers and marketers should be involved in initial meetings to help brainstorm and establish the basic strategy and message of the content.

This brainstorming step can sometimes be the start of a conflict between marketing and design. Marketing is interested in helping nurture leads while helping clients on their journey down the funnel, whereas design tends to focus on the emotion and experience of the content. If mismanaged, your marketing and design teams may start to clash and disagree with each other. Focusing on the final goals of the content during the ideation phase can be a great way to unify marketing and design to be on the same page and share similar goals. 

Communication and Giving Feedback

Marketing and design teams are both experts at communication. While they might focus on different aspects of communication, they both want to convey a thought or feeling to their audience. As long as both sides agree on the final goals and outcomes of a project, they can strengthen each other through their mutual love of communication. 

If communication ever starts to fall apart, remember to try to understand who you are talking to. Not everyone will respond well to written requests and briefs. Instead, you can try sending other things like mood boards to help clarify a visual idea or design.

To help improve communication between marketing and designers, try to limit personal opinion from your criticism and focus more on the “why” behind your decisions. There is a major difference between “That picture doesn’t work for me” and “That picture won’t engage with the target audience because it showcases the wrong demographic.”

Deadlines and Revisions

The world runs on deadlines, and both marketing and design teams understand that. The downside to some marketing and design teams is that they can get caught up trying to make everything perfect during the revision stage.

When you’re establishing deadlines and the scope of a project, make sure everyone agrees on its pacing and limitations. You might really want to spend a year on a project trying to make every aspect of it perfect, but if you only have a month, everyone will have to agree there are going to be some imperfections and make some compromises. 

How Can Marketing and Design Come Together?

The best collaborations between marketing and design involve both sides coming together. Designers need to beef up their marketing knowledge to better communicate with marketers and make designs more compelling. Likewise, marketers need to learn basic design concepts to better communicate and understand a designer’s point of view.

Finding middle ground and continually communicating is the best solution for how marketing and design can work together. It will help improve clarity and make sure your objectives are always aligned. Clear, consistent communication and empathy help everyone work together. 

Collaborate with Tiled

One way to show that you’re not picking sides between marketing and design is to choose a platform that’s built with both in mind. Tiled provides an interactive platform that creates engaging content to help nurture leads and empower customers, while also having a rich design framework that allows for excellent designs. Tiled can act as the bread that holds together your marketing and design sandwich.

Request a demo today to find out how marketing and design can work together with Tiled.

Design Thinking
Online Marketing
Ty Nilsson
Sr. Director of Demand Generation at Tiled