For the Bookworms, here's the gist!
So you know that my biggest concern in my industry and what really pisses me off is that there are a lot of designers who just bamboozle you! And the thing that I hate about that is that all of my clients and the people who are attracted to me aren't in business to be sleazy, but to make an income and an impact on the world.
And the fact that someone would come in, take your dream and crush it by taking your money and not realizing your vision, pisses me off! It really grinds my gears.
About 90% of my clients have worked with multiple designers before and are pleasantly surprised by the way they're treated and of course it feels good for me, but it sucks that there are so many people in the industry who don't treat you the way you should be treated.
So based on my clients's experiences, here are some tips for you so you can avoid Bamboozlement!
What are their Values & How Do They Fit?
So there are tons of talented designers out there - I've got some serious design crushes actually! So what makes each business different is their values. This is exactly why I ask my clients to fill out a client profile.
Someone may love my work, but it's also about how we fit together. When I was starting out, I had clients who would miss deadlines again and again and because I'm really big on time, that would really piss me off! And that shows that we weren't a good fit for each other. Even though they were good people and they had AMAZING dreams, we just didn't fit.
I'm also really into confident self-expression so I tend to attract people who are bold and proud of who they are. So I don't fully mesh with people who aren't as confident to be who they are and step out of their little bubble.
Therefore, you need to know what your values are and also what that designer's values are so you can make sure that you two don't clash. You'll be able to get that through their marketing, how they speak and show up in their business, through their website, and you can just ask them!
Do they understand your audience?
If you sell auto parts to trucking business owners, try to go with a designer who already understands the industry and your audience.
I know the online arena like the back of my hand and I know exactly how to help others connect quickly with visual marketing. So people who's audience is mostly online and who are trying to grow online should come to me 'cause I know how to get them results.
So go for someone who already knows your audience and how they behave. When looking for a designer for your business, look for someone who knows the psychology of how your people think so your website and brand are designed with purpose.
Even if your designer doesn't know your audience, make sure they're willing to do the research to get to know them
How are they improving their skills?
Look into how they're looking to become better designers. Are they taking courses or classes? Do they have any mentors/coaches, or are they joining masterminds?
I'm obsessed with learning and improving myself and am okay with accepting criticism and accepting ways to become better because in the end, the better I am, the better it is for my clients! The more your designer knows, the better it is for you because you end up making more money.
It's also important to see how they take revisions. When I first started, if a client didn't like my work, I felt like I was being personally attacked. I knew that I grew as a designer when I started looking at my work objectively to improve the design.
The process with my clients became more collaborative and we were in it together. So you can look at how the designer takes criticism? Are they looking to see how they can make things better? Or are they feeling attacked simply because you disagree?
How do they communicate and manage their time?
You need to feel listened to and see how they communicate their design. Does your designer create work just to be pretty, or are they looking to communicate something through it?
Before hiring a designer, you can tell if they design with intention, by simply going through their portfolio. If they just have pretty pictures, there may not be much of a story there. But if they have little blurbs to explain the design, you're lookin' at a great designer there!
You'll also see how they manage their time by the way they speak. When a client approaches me about working with me, I'm not usually ready to get started immediately because I'm usually managing other clients. I have to check my calendar to see which dates would be ideal and if it matches up with that client.
You can tell a designer has their shit together, because they TALK like they have their shit together!
If you're not doing your research and looking into that, you're risking not getting your work completed. Which is an issue that so many of my clients have, that affects them in the long-run 'cause they even have to pay to have someone else re-create work they've already paid for.
You really need to look into designers, because not all of them will meet your standards. Let's do some math:
50% of "designers" aren't even actual designers. They haven't learned the principles of design, don't know how to design so business can get results, and some don't even use professional design tools (if your logo was made in Canva by a designer, you got ripped off - but that's another article).
The other 25% knows their shit in terms of design, but they don't know how to manage their time, clients, or a business. I used to be one of those designers until I got some serious help. Because they don't teach you how to do this in school!
Then the last 25%, we got our shit together, etc.
And you can distinguish those platinum designers by the way they speak, who they work with, who they associate with, and usually how much they charge.
Because these business owners either went through years of owning a business to figure things out on their own, or they hired a coach to fast-forward their progress, they also learned their value and charge accordingly.
Do you feel like you're competing for your designer's attention?
Because if you do, their time and client-management skills may not be on point!
Soo that's about it! If you read through this and you end up with a shitty designer, that's on you because you've been warned and informed!
I made this post to help you protect yourself. I've gotten taken advantage of in this industry and it's not a great feeling. Hopefully, some of these tips will help you pick the right person to work with.
And of course, if you're looking for a web designer who will get you the results you want smoothly and easily, I'm your girl! Fill out your client profile here and I’ll get in touch with you 😊
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