Friday, February 28, 2014

Freelancer's Guide Part 1

Good Morning Designers!!

As the world around us changes, the more we adapt and we choose to find work on our own and for ourselves rather than for a permanent employer. The days are gone of the industrial revolution when you would get a job at an plant and work there all your life. Being freelance isn't just a walk in the park, it's a lot more challenging than working in an office for someone else. You don't just have the task before you to do, you also have to worry about what task comes after that and, if there isn't any, then go about finding the next job. When living a freelance life in a freelance world means you need to find your own clients. That's a lot more difficult than you imagine before you start out. It does get easier the more you do it. The more work you do the more work will come your way. Being a freelance designer you ask yourself how do I get clients? How can I be noticeable? Here is a Freelancer Guide that can help you:

1. Viral Video is your friend

You are probably thinking that is crazy, well it's not. Nowadays people are posting videos to Vine, Twitter, and Facebook each and everyday hoping that somebody would share, or repost there video. If you can create an entertaining video that is in some way related to what you do, what ever it is you're selling, then you'll wind with a lot of leads should it go viral. Also, promote the video on Facebook, I know it costs to promote on Facebook, but that is something that you have to think of when trying get clients.

2. Referrals

You may often here that the world is such a small place, well it is a small place. You may ask how do I get people to refer to me to a client? Well, that's easy. You have friends, family, neighbors, church members, etc. that know people that you might not know and refer them to you for design work. Also, these same people can help promote you as designer by having a couple of your business cards, reposting or sharing your videos on different social networks.

3. Job Boards

When you are first staring out as a freelance designer, you should be checking job boards. If you're creative, check out the job board at Behance, Craiglist, Elance, and other job board sites. These are great websites that are always looking for freelance designers. Also, this is a great way to gain loyal customers and to get your name of there.


Why You Shouldn't Fear Outsourcing Design?

Often times as a freelance designer you might be asked to do something that you can not complete or you might be overwhelmed with one project that you might not be able to complete another. Well that is when you outsource to another designer although you and other freelance designers are in competition with each other, it's still important to know that you have help when needed. Here are a few tips of why outsourcing isn't that bad:

1. Outsourcing 'grunt work' makes business sense.

If you're going to be a successful designer you need to be a business-owner first, and a designer second. I know that may sounds crazy but as a freelancer you need to think like a CEO, you need to focus on building your business by designing.  Hiring a couple of outside designers to work for you isn't bad at all because at the end of the day they are working for you because you hired them.

2. You can't run a business if you're run by fear.

Fear makes you inelastic and less responsive to change. It makes you focus on the threats and it stops you from seeing the opportunities. And, in the business world, if you can't adapt you're history. For example, think about the silent movie stars of yesteryear when "walkie talkies" were invented. Those who accepted and adapted to the new technology thrived, and those who didn't quickly became a memory. Who do you want to be?

3. Outsourcing makes your life easier (sometimes).

It's usually this fun stuff that is more high-value and will add more to your bottom line so create a list of what you love doing and delegate the res. By outsourcing selected tasks you can choose your projects, and you can focus on what you enjoy. Once you've found your outsourced worker, the whole process is easy to manage with online project management software like Wrike, Basecamp, or TeamworkPM.


Thursday, February 27, 2014

How To Give Yourself A Promotion As A Freelancers?

Do you deserve a promotion in your freelance design business? If so, how are you doing it? This week I was approached by a client to build a them a Wordpress website and redesigning of the logo. After, meeting with them and talking about deadlines and prices. I thought to myself am I charging to them too much then I thought about all the hard, sweat, and tears that I will be putting into the project. Also, remember reading an article saying how to give yourself a promotion as a freelance designer. This article gives you three tips on how to give yourself a promotion as a freelancer.

1. Promote yourself to a management position

Bring on more clients and increase your income while still remaining small. Promote yourself from "freelance designer" to "freelance creative director". Hiring other freelancers to do some of the work that beings drudgery to your freelance lifestyle can breathe new life into your work, your attitude, and your outlook on your business.

2. Promote yourself to work on your "top accounts"

Typically in an design agency the most talented person works with the best client. As a freelancer you should do the same. In order to that you will need to outsource your difficult clients.

3. Increase your paycheck and reduce your weekly work hours

Find design jobs that allow to make money multiple times on the same project. Whether your designing Wordpress themes and sell them over and over again on sites like MojoThemes, sell stock design, desing and sell products like apparel, or any other of the thousands of options, passive income can be one of the most gratifying parts of running a business.

Friday, February 21, 2014

How To Become A Freelance Designer

Hello World!

Being a freelance designer can be fun and difficult at times, you may ask yourself a couple of questions, How can I become a successful designer? How do I get clients? How can I make money? I ask these questions because as a freelance designer some people may think that you just sit at home in your pajamas all day and work at your own pace. Which can be true, but at the same time it is false, you do have deadlines to meet with your work.

How can I become a successful designer?

When first starting out as a freelance designer, I recommend that you start slow, don't just up and quit your day job (unless you don't have one). I recommend that you work and do design jobs on the side for two reasons: to see how much you can handle and to gain clients. I know that may sound insane but freelance designer are always working on more than one project at the same time. Once, gain enough experience and clients then you can quit your job and work full time as a freelancer.

How do I get clients?

When looking to find clients, there are so many different ways to find them. You can look on Google, Craiglist, and Twitter. When looking on for a job on Google use Google Maps when looking on Google Maps, search for businesses in your area that could possibly use your services. You can search for design firms, print companies, marketing agencies and anything that you think could your skills can be used at. Once, you are done searching and you find a business that you think could use your service send them an email introducing yourself and your work. As for Craiglist, their is always somebody up there posting that they need graphic designer services. Using Twitter, can make connection to design companies as well as help you get a design. Many different marketing companies post that are looking for a freelance designer a project. Also, there are a lot design contest that are being posted on Twitter. By doing all of these daily you will be sure to find clients.

How can I make money?

As a freelancer everything is coming out of you pocket. So when you are setting your rates please remember that you are  paying for all coverages. So you need to make sure that your are covering all these in your pricing. That doesn't mean charge a lot for design, but charge enough to make sure that you are covering all fees.

Please remember as freelance design you do need the latest software to design.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Who Should Care More About Your Design: You or Your Client?

For this article, the writer Addison Duvall proposes the question Who should care more about your design, you or your client? Many designer stress that it's the client's needs and desires of which should come first, no matter what. Duvall says," As the designer, your name is attached to everything you produce, and your reputation as a competent professional is tested each time one of your designs goes public."

Duvall explains that as the designer you should take pride and joy in every design that you do and know that your clients would cherish your design as much as you would. She also, say that when you are producing and putting work in your portfolio it should be an accurate reflection of you styles and values, which send a clear message to potential clients.

It is the client who has the final say so whether your design vision gets to see the light of day. This is only fair, it's their business that your design is representing.

8 Ways To Brand Yourself and Your Freelancing Business

Being a freelance designer you need to develop a brand identity for yourself and your business, so you can have clients to continue to reach out to you. This article gives great ways to brand yourself, your business, and develop your own style as freelance designer.
  1. Define your business 
  2. Define your audience
  3. The business name
  4. The logo
  5. Your website design, business card design, and everything else
  6. Write an elevator pitch
  7. Write an about page
  8. Get client to reach you