Behind the Scenes: What I Do as a Planner Graphic Designer

What I Do as a Planner Designer

Hey there!

I’m sure you’ve come across a ton of beautifully designed planners, calendars, or printable PDFs floating around the business world. If you’re a business owner yourself, you’ve probably thought about how amazing it would be to integrate these into your brand as a new source of income or a way to showcase your expertise.

Yes, the pros are evident. Not only can it boost your bottom line, but well-designed planners can also create a tangible connection between you and your audience, give a professional edge to your brand, and help your followers organize their lives (or businesses) in a more effective way. It’s a win-win for everyone, right?

Well, not so fast.

The realities of creating these design-intensive items can be a bit, shall we say, overwhelming. If you’ve ever tried to design a planner from scratch without a professional background, you probably ended up pulling your hair out (metaphorically, hopefully). Matching colors, choosing fonts, aligning everything perfectly, creating user-friendly layouts…it’s enough to make your head spin!

That’s where I come in.

Hi, I’m Kayla, a certified professional Print Production Specialist and Graphic Designer of 5 years. I have an undying passion for curating functional, user-centric designed planners. My goal? To help businesses like yours navigate the challenging world of planner design and production.

I don’t just create pretty planners – I craft solutions that make a real difference in your day-to-day business operations and for your customers. I believe in creating designs that not only look good but are genuinely helpful and easy to use.

But I won’t sugarcoat it. It’s not all rainbows and butterflies. There can be hiccups, roadblocks, and detours. But with the right approach, patience, and collaboration, we can turn your vision into a tangible product that shines.

Stick around as I peel back the curtain and share what you can expect when you dive into the world of planner design with a professional like me.

Let’s get started, shall we?

My Role as a Planner Graphic Designer

You’ve probably heard of graphic designers and you’ve most likely used a planner. But have you ever heard of a Planner Graphic Designer? If not, you’re probably wondering, “what in the world is that?”

So, let me break it down. A Planner Graphic Designer specializes in creating visually appealing and functional planners, checklists, worksheets, or any kind of PDFs that can add value to your business. The uniqueness lies in blending graphic design with strategic planning to create a product that isn’t just aesthetically pleasing, but also serves a specific function – be it productivity, goal tracking, budgeting, or anything else that requires a bit of structure and organization.

Still with me? Great! Now that we’ve covered the what, let’s dive into my role as a Planner Graphic Designer and my specific workflow for each project.

PHASE ONE: Strategic Design Planning

Every successful project begins with a solid foundation. Our first step is to gather as much information as we can about your business, your audience, and the problem you’re trying to solve.

To achieve this, we’ll sit down and chat via Zoom. It’s the perfect opportunity for you to spill all your hopes, dreams, and goals for the project. We’ll answer your questions, address your concerns, and together, we’ll paint a detailed picture of what you’re aiming to achieve.

PHASE TWO: Downloadable Structure & Features

Now, armed with a solid understanding of your needs, we move on to the planning phase. We’ll create a visual outline (or wireframe) for your downloadable, identifying all the main topics and sub-topics, and noting any special features your product needs.

This blueprint acts as our roadmap, guiding us in developing a product that’s comprehensive and targeted to solve a specific problem.

PHASE THREE: Downloadable Design & Development

Here comes the fun part – design and development! We take all the elements from the outline and breathe life into them, creating an actual, functional product.

We start by developing a template for your interior pages to ensure your content flows seamlessly. Then, your brand personality is weaved into every aspect of the design. We’ll also design 1-2 different cover options, add interactive features, and perform a thorough proofreading to ensure everything is just right.

PHASE FOUR: Testing & Editing

Next up is testing and editing. We go through every element of your downloadable, making sure everything works as it should. We also check to see how your content prints, considering details like spacing for hole-punching, color accuracy, and image quality.

While we do a comprehensive check, we also encourage you to look for any additional edits before we proceed to final delivery.

PHASE FIVE: Delivery & Knowledge Transfer

Finally, the moment you’ve been waiting for – delivery! After your final approval, we’ll send over your downloadable via email. But we don’t just leave you there; along with your new product, you’ll receive a packet full of additional tools & resources to help you market, mock-up, and manage your documents.

The Types of Projects I Work On

As a Planner Graphic Designer, I’m often asked about the kinds of projects I work on. So, allow me to give you a little peek into my creative world. My projects usually fall into one of four categories: Planners & Calendars, Workbooks & Worksheets, Checklists, and Guides.

Here’s a quick rundown of what each of these entail.

Planners & Calendar Spreads

Custom Planner Project: Trucks & Trainers
Custom Planner Project: She Owns It
Custom Planner Project: Black Girl Holidays

Planners and calendar spreads are a major part of my work. These aren’t just any run-of-the-mill planners, though. We’re talking about comprehensive files that include daily, weekly, and monthly calendars, specific schedules, task lists, charts, to-do lists, and note pages.

I believe in the magic of details. So, I always make sure to include practical features that are more than just pretty – they’re designed to help your audience stay organized and on top of their game. Expect your planner to have all the bells and whistles that make planning a pleasure, not a chore.

Workbooks & Worksheets

Custom Planner Project: Trucks and Trainers
Custom Planner Project: Hewlett-Packard Company
Custom Planner Project: The One Percent Woman’s Club

Next up are workbooks and worksheets. These beauties are all about helping your audience work through guided exercises & prompts to find solutions to specific problems.

And let me tell you – we don’t leave any stone unturned. We delve deep into aspects of the problem that might often be overlooked. The result? A workbook that is thorough, insightful, and as comprehensive as they come.


Custom Planner Project: Andrea Oliver LLC
Custom Planner Project: The Ideal Planner Co.
Custom Planner Project: Marceline Vital Perez

Who doesn’t love a good checklist, right? Checklists are some of the most beloved downloadables because they simplify complex tasks into bite-sized, actionable steps.

They’re perfect as a lead magnet for your email marketing strategy, giving your audience something of instant value. A well-crafted checklist doesn’t just list actions, it guides your audience through a process in a way that’s easy to understand and follow.


Custom Planner Project: Peak Creative
Custom Planner Project: She Owns It
Custom Planner Project: Potomac Academy Corp

Finally, we have guides. Think of these as your secret weapon for providing value to your audience. A well-designed guide provides a list of guidelines or a process that can be followed repeatedly to achieve a specific benefit.

Creating a guide requires time and research, but the result is a comprehensive set of steps that can help your audience navigate a particular issue or achieve a desired outcome.

Case studies of past planner design projects

The Ideal Planner Co.

Working with Genesis at The Ideal Planner Co. to design a digital personal planner was such a great experience in flexing my minimalist & modern design skills. 

Genesis wanted a very simple, black & white design that still created a functional space for her audience to organize their daily lives. 

With no color or fancy graphics to hide behind, I was really able to dive deeper into the root of the design, and I loved how practical all of the pages turned out. With this being a digital planner, you can imagine her audience finding even more ease of use in their day-to-day lives!

A Lit Life

Stephanie and I worked together to develop a fun, brightly-colored reading journal to help reflect on the books in your life for her online shop

This was an incredibly collaborative design process, as Stephanie knew exactly what she was envisioning, and I helped to put it on paper. With a detailed outline, I was able to materalized her ideas and format them to create over 100 journal pages, packed with value.

Working with Stephanie really allowed me to flex my design muscles when it comes to adding lots of bright colors. My design style typically leans more neutral & modern, so having the chance to incorporate tons of fun colors into the design was such a breath of fresh air. 

SUBTLE FLEX: Stephanie’s printed book journal sold out in WEEKS after she launched. I had the pleasure of working with her yet again to do some updates based on the feedback she got from her customers! She’s killing it!

Andrea Oliver LLC

A fun and bright workbook packed with meaningful prompts for relearning self love and living your most fulfilling life!

Working with Andrea, we were able to develop a workbook that was incredibly hands-on. Each and every prompt walks through a different exercise, and is the perfect tool for Andrea’s coaching business to teach by “doing” instead of “telling”.

Because each prompt was so different from one another, I was really able to happily creep outside of my comfort zone and play with so many variations of formatting and layouts, which was a blast for me!

I was also really about to flex my Market Research and User Experience skills that I’ve learned as a certified UX/UI Designer, and research impactful activities to include in the workbook. 

What You Can Expect Working With Me

We’ve navigated through the ins and outs of my role as a Planner Graphic Designer, and journeyed through the typical projects I handle. Now, let’s dive into the exciting bit – what you can expect when you choose to work with me. It’s more than just a transaction, it’s a collaboration and an adventure in creativity!

  • My Design and Planning Philosophy – I am a firm believer that good design is not just about aesthetics. It’s about crafting a marriage between form and function. My aim? To deliver visually appealing, functional, and problem-solving products that resonate with your audience.
  • My Client Communication and Project Management Style – in terms of client communication and project management, I prize clarity and consistency. I will keep you in the loop at every step, ensuring you’re never left guessing about the status of your project. Regular check-ins, timely updates, and open channels for feedback are all part of the package.
  • What I Bring to the Table – as a Planner Graphic Designer, my skills and talents are a unique blend, with a dash of perspective that adds flavor to your projects. With a background in print production and five years of experience in graphic design, I understand both the creative and technical sides of creating downloadables:
    • I am certified as a Print Production Professional, which means I’m well-versed in everything there is to know about designing, printing, and selling your next planner or workbook.
    • I’m also certified as a Graphic Designer, so I’m deeply familiar with the technical aspects of design, like setting the right mood, selecting the perfect tone, and mastering the art of typography.
    • This blend of qualifications and experience allows me to bring a fresh perspective to your project, pushing boundaries and innovating while staying on top of the latest design trends and technologies. The result? Products that are modern, engaging, and high value.
  • The Benefits of Working With Me – when you work with a Planner Graphic Designer like me, you’re signing up for more than just a stunning downloadable. You’re commissioning a resource that’s tailor-made to solve a specific problem and resonate with your audience. You’re saving time, reducing stress, and entrusting the job to a seasoned professional. Plus, you’re gaining a valuable resource that can help attract leads, boost your brand image, and showcase your expertise.

In short, working with me is about bringing your vision to life in a way that adds real value to your brand and effectively serves your audience.

So, are you ready to embark on this creative journey? Let’s make magic together!

Start Your Custom Planner Design Project Today!

And there you have it – a behind-the-scenes look at my role as a Planner Graphic Designer. It’s a process that fuses creativity with strategy to create a product that not only looks good, but also delivers tangible value to your business.

If this has sparked your interest, or if you’re beginning to see the outline of a project taking shape in your mind, I’m excited to hear about it! Let’s transform those ideas into something tangible and truly impactful. You can kick-start the process by filling out an Custom Planner Design Inquiry Form on my website. It’s the first step towards bringing your vision to life!

Looking back on the work I’ve done, and the amazing clients I’ve collaborated with, I am reminded of why I love what I do. The satisfaction of knowing I’ve helped solve problems and facilitated success through design is a feeling like no other. And the best part? That each project doesn’t just result in a pretty downloadable, but a functional, impactful resource that serves a purpose.

So, here’s to bringing ideas to life, one design at a time. I can’t wait to start this creative journey with you. Don’t hesitate, fill out that Inquiry Form today and let’s make something amazing!


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