The transition to a freelance career as a graphic designer might not be as smooth as one expects. You will become much busier because there will be nobody sending clients your way. Unlike working for an agency, you will not have colleagues managing certain tasks. It will be all you.
Of course, difficulties are expected, and mistakes are bound to happen, especially in the early stages of discovering what being a freelancing graphic designer is about. However, you can make things easier for yourself by learning from graphic designers who went through the same process and managed to succeed.
This article will give you some great tips on what you need to focus on while launching your freelance career.
Create a Diversified Portfolio
Start with a diversified portfolio. Even if you specialize in a particular niche, it is recommended to have multiple examples of prior work that you can present to potential clients.
Your portfolio should have a narrative and incorporate personal branding. For example, when you put work in the portfolio, do not limit it to just visuals. Write a text explaining the process and show interested people that you have great communication skills in addition to graphic design mastery.
If you have more works than you can fit, include designs you believe to be the biggest standouts. The goal of a portfolio is to grab attention, and showcasing the best of your abilities is one of the ways to do that.
Try Going the Extra Mile for Your Clients
Managing client relationships could prove to be the biggest challenge as a freelancer. In fact, you might struggle to land clients initially due to all the competition. That is why you should look to go the extra mile and convert potential leads.
Does your client want a few revisions or work to be finished a day earlier? So long as you can manage to accommodate their needs, you should do it for the sake of establishing a better relationship and potentially create a long-term partnership.
Keep in mind, though, that if a client’s demands get too ridiculous, you are better off not committing because it will lead to potential abuse. If they smell that they can take advantage of a freelance graphic designer who is still in their early career, these “clients” will not hesitate.
Advertise Yourself on Social Media
As a graphic designer, particularly one who freelances, you want to establish yourself on the internet as much as possible. The higher the presence, the more likely you are to find new clients.
Social media is a standout advertising channel for artists because the best content on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and other SM platforms is visual.
Images, infographics, and fanart are just a few examples of what gets the most engagement on social media. You can post your work and make social media sites a source for finding clients. Once a post goes viral, it might reach people who have been looking for the exact graphic designer that you are.
Be Professional When Communicating
Professional communication is one of the keys to establishing yourself as a proper graphic designer. Be it potential leads, current clients, or other designers, you want to come off as a professional.
When talking on the phone, keep your tone moderate and not get out of line. When exchanging emails, make sure to check for typos before sending an email because errors leave a bad impression. Also, use a signature maker to create a professional email signature with your name, contact details, photo, social media icons, and a website address if you have one.
Similar to other freelancing aspects, communication might take a while to figure out if you did not interact with clients directly while working in an agency. On the other hand, it is an inevitable part of a freelancing career, and you will need to master it to succeed as a freelancer.
Avoid Taking Too Many Projects at the Same Time
Starting a freelancing career, you might be eager to get your hands on as many clients and projects as you can. However, it is crucial to estimate how much actual workload you can handle.
If you take on more work than you can realistically finish, it will affect your career negatively. Missing deadlines will lead to customers being unhappy, which will affect your mood and motivation, and the whole thing snowballs from there.
Remember that when you plan your work, consider the time necessary for tasks other than just the design work. Client relationships, invoices, taxes, and even fixing your work equipment are part of your responsibilities when you are working alone.
Offer Your Services on Well-Establish Platforms
As you can probably guess, there are a lot of different platforms that offer graphic design services. The variety is good because when someone wants to hire a designer, they can choose one that fits their criteria, such as quality and budget.
To become a freelance graphic designer who has a steady flow of good clients, you want to focus more on networking on the best platforms. Wasting time on clients that pay 5 or 10 dollars for a logo is not worth it. Instead, aim to find gigs that pay what your work is actually worth.
Seek as Much Feedback as You Can
Unbiased feedback is a great asset to have as an artist. Once you become a freelancer, you will not have the benefit of discussing your work with coworkers. Instead, you will likely need to rely on strangers online. For example, when you can post your work on social media, you can expect comments from people giving their opinion. So long as these opinions are justified and provide value, they will help you improve.
In case you are not receiving enough feedback, ask for it directly instead of just putting your work out there. A call-to-action asking for criticism is bound to attract more attention and incentivize people to share their thoughts about your design.
This is a Contributor Post. Opinions expressed here are opinions of the Contributor. Influencive does not endorse or review brands mentioned; does not and cannot investigate relationships with brands, products, and people mentioned and is up to the Contributor to disclose. Contributors, amongst other accounts and articles may be professional fee-based.