IntroQuestion Audience:What area do you specialize?How long been freelancing?Goal to provide at least 1 or 2 new ideas or resources to help make the business of running your freelance business a little easier
Running your own business is hard work and for many designers – it’s the part of being a freelancer that scares them most. Fortunately, there are so many tools and apps available to make running your business easier – allowing you to focus on what you’re best at. We wanted to bring attention some great resources we’ve discovered over the years in areas we all deal with.
Creative Cloud also offers Free access to Behance Hosting for up to 5 sites
Our Top 10 list here will cover 2 areas. The first 5 you see here will cover how best to position yourself successfully in the creative freelance space and the others will focus on how to best market your services
You don’t have to be a logo designer to be effective at managing your brand. Select colors, fonts and images that represent you and the work you want to be doing. Then, be consistent across platforms so that no matter where a potential client might look, he or she will find the information needed to decide whether they want to start a business relationship with you.Utilize the same profile pic on your portfolio as well as your LI, Twitter & FB page
Your portfolio/URL is an extension of you and the work you WANT to do. Doesn’t matter whether you choose a unique, custom site or one of the many portfolio hosting sites. Keep work relevant - the work presented should always be fresh, current and up to date. Outdated work is the quickest way to be overlooked for a potential job. Update it regularly. Our recruiters recommend at least every three months. Less is more – Remember to make the work the hero of your portfolio or site. Don’t include every piece of work you’ve ever done - Only include those of which you are most proud or that represent the work you want to be doing most. This might mean including screenshots of short-lived projects and even conceptual or personal work that was never produced. Mention that additional samples of work are available upon request – A PDF of targeted samples can sometimes be more effective for some clients. Be sure to list the other industries or media across which you have worked.Organize your work – Depending on the nature of your work, find a way to display it most effectively. Should the work be categorized by industry, media type, client or project? Whatever you decide, don’t forget to provide a short description that explains the company/agency for whom you worked, the client’s objectives for the project, your role on the piece and (if applicable) the software utilized. Keep design clean, interface simple and navigation to as few clicks as possible. Introduce yourself – While including your resume or past job experience is a must, be sure to also include a bio that explains who you are, your creative process and even some personal trivia. Let your personality shine. Broadcast your brand - A portfolio of work is part of a creative’spersonal brand. Make sure everyone can find your site easily. Include your URL on your resume and LinkedIn profile. If creating your own site – make sharing easy so people can easily follow your Twitter feed or blog. You might also consider a “Contact” form for potential employers to inquire about work.
Know what you actually do (and what you don’t) Average Hiring Manager looks at resumes for less than 10 seconds. Be clear, straightforward and focused about what you do.Good – Designer/Developer, UI & Visual Designer, Web Designer/Art Director, UX & Motion DesignerBad – Web Designer & Copywriter, UX Developer and Project Manager, UI Designer & Marketing ManagerNot a Jack of all Trades
People do business with people they trust. Become the trusted advisor clients need by establishing yourself as the expert. Puts you immediately ahead of your fellow freelancersBe consistent with your efforts
In between gigs, there is still work to be done to make sure your skills stay sharp, your portfolio full and your resume without too many gaps.The later two also provide key networking opportunities as well.
When your face to face network grows, you’ll find your social networks grow organically as a result.“Groups not only add credibility to your experience, but they also let you interact with people who are talking about what you want to talk about, even if you don’t actually know them.” Groups are good for expanding your network, and they can help you become more influential within your industry. Ask for endorsements
Great work is useless if potential clients can’t see it. Your work needs to be where clients are looking.
In addition to helping you get more work – recruiters can also assist with resume/portfolio feedback, interview preparation, hourly rate negotiation and payment.
The freelancers world can be lonely at times – that’s why it’s important to have a support group who understands your struggles, can help with solutions and be an extra advocate when the time is right. These folks can come from groups meet-ups, local organizations or online communities. As you network these relationships should start naturally – take time to nurture them!
When using a coworking space or coffeeshop to do business – you never know who might be listening to your conversation. Only get one chance to make a first impressionPitch – you have 10 seconds
Transcript of "Top 10 Resources & Marketing Tips for Creative Freelancers"
SThe Top 10 Must Haves& Must Dos forCreative FreelancersHow to become a sought after freelancer in today’s competitive market& the best resources to help you along the way
Business FundamentalsWhether you are just starting to freelance or looking for answers to questionsas they arise in your business, these sites offer many of the answers youseek when running your own business: Graphic Design Blender – Blog for freelance designers running their ownbusiness The Self Employed – Resources for the self-employed (from taxes tomoney to marketing) Creative Public – Business resources for Creative Professionals http://finance.lacity.org - Ensure your business complies with city, state &federal requirements
TimingThese resources track & manage your most valuable asset– time! Some tools are connected to invoicing or projectmanagement programs. Others are independent: SlimTimer – Stopwatch that tracks jobs through web app Tick – Time-tracking app to keep on budget Functionfox – Time tracker tool for creatives Breaktime – App that reminds you to take a break
InvoicingWhen you don’t invoice, you don’t get paid, so it literallypays to stay on top of your billing. Find a program that’seasy to use and maintain: Billings – Professional time billing app Freshbooks – Tracks time & sends invoice by email ormail Simply Bill – Creates, sends & tracks invoices Expensify – Expense Reports that don’t suck
Scheduling & MeetingsTrying to set up a meeting or call withclients, vendors or teams? Try thesetools to save time: Doodle – Easy Scheduling &Appointment setting GoTo Meeting – WebConferencing and OnlineMeetings
Project ManagementThese resources will help you stayorganized and manage both projects andclients: Basecamp – Leading web-basedcollaboration tool Trello – Collaboration tool thatorganizes projects on boards ConceptShare – Share, communicateand collaborate on creative work Asana – Free task management forteams
File ManagementSending and receiving large files from clients – especially when noproject management software is in place – is vital in this business.These are just a few of the file storage and delivery tools we’ve used: Box – Secure content sharing Dropbox – Access and share files from anywhere We Transfer – Free service to send files YouSendIt – Send, sync and share large files from any device Google Drive – 5GB of free file storage Microsoft SkyDrive – 7GB of free cloud storage eFax – Internet fax to email services TurboScan – App for scanning & sending PDFs NeatReceipts – Mobile scanner & digital filing system
Creative ResourcesNew apps and tools are always beingdeveloped to help Creatives stay creative.Here are just a few of our favorites rightnow: Adobe Creative Cloud – Access toAdobe’s Creative suite of desktop-application, including: Designers Toolbox – Variety of printand web resources Color Schemer – Several color tools Kuler - Select color palettes with a builtin color wheel or your phone’s camera
Web ToolsWhen it comes to having your own website, there are severalchoices about the platform on which to create it and how to host it: Adobe Business Catalyst – Hosted CMS with all-in-onemanagement dashboard Wordpress – A CMS-based Blogging and Publishing tool PSD2HTML – Build websites in HTML from PSD files Dreamhost – Shared and cloud-based web hosting
Legal ServicesProtect yourself and your work: My New Company – Legal Info for your new business AIGA Form of Agreement – Template for Design Services Contract Creator – Creates custom contracts for work Copyright – Everything about US Copyright law LegalZoom – Online legal document services Lawyers for the Creative Arts – Pro Bono Legal for the Creative Arts LegalGrind – Coffee & Legal Counsel in a casual environment
Co-working SolutionsCo-working offers Community, Collaboration &Professional Amenities/Environments – not tomention a place to Network and grow yourBusiness: BLANKSPACES – Mid-Wilshire IndieDesk - Downtown Cross Campus – Santa Monica Working Village – Santa Monica Coloft – Santa Monica Nextspace – Culver City
STop 10 Must DosThe best ways for Freelancers tomarket, network & maintain aconstant pipeline of work
1. Design your Brand2. Perfect Your Portfolio3. Be Specific4. Become an Expert5. Fill the Downtime6. Network7. Get Listed8. Work with Recruiters9. Befriend Creatives10. Never Stop Selling
Design Your Brand DONT Be Generic – Let your personal style guidethe color palette, font treatments & images used tocreate your brand/logo DO Be Consistent – Utilize the samedesign, mission statement, service offerings &profile pictures across all print collateral & the web Business Cards Portfolio / Portfolio sites Social Media Platforms Directory Listings / Advertisements
Perfect Your Portfolio Keep work relevant Test links and refresh workat least every 3 months Less is More Best pieces first Only include work similar towhat you WANT to do Offer additional samples viaPDF Organize your work Keep design clean, interfacesimple & navigation friendly Include descriptions Introduce Yourself Let your personality shine Broadcast your brand Include URL on everythingyou do with your brand
Be Specific Focus your expertise on 1 – 2 areas only Resume & portfolio should clearly state your job functions Skills should be complimentary Most clients look for specialists - not generalists Resumes and cover letters should not include irrelevant oroutdated work experience
Become an Expert Join the online discussion – Read, Like, Share &Comment Articles, Blogs, Tweets, Posts & LinkedIn Groups Start a regular blog, podcast or webinar to commend onindustry news, trends and practices Write & submit articles, blog posts or quotes topublications Volunteer with local industry organizations
Fill the Downtime Work on exploratory or concept pieces for your portfolio Take a class, attend a conference or complete tutorialson new software, upgrades or shortcuts Volunteer for an organization that can benefit from yourservices
Network – Online & In Person Social Media Networking Create Personal and/or Business Pages acrossSocial Platforms(LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Google+) Join & Interact with Social Media Groups Ask for endorsements Face-to-Face Networking Local Business Events Creative Industry Meetings Conferences Classes Co-Working Spaces
Get Listed Directories Freelance Switch, Dexigner, Freelancer.com, DesignDirectory.com,TopDesignFirms.com, DesignFirms.org Portfolio Sites Behance, Krop, Coroflot, Dribbble, Creative Hot List, Carbonmade,Codepen, Dice Resume Portals Monster, CareerBuilder, Indeed Local organization websites
Register with SpecialistRecruiters Working with recruiters expands your sales teamexponentially – teams of people trying to get you morework Recruiters have access to opportunities not listed on jobboards Resumes/Portfolios from recruiters go to the top of thepile Working with a recruiter who has a reputation forrepresenting outstanding talent adds value to your brand
Befriend Like-Minded &Equally Skilled Creatives Counterparts to hold you accountable, keep your skills upto date and challenge you to think differently Friends to serve as your “team” when consultation isrequired Partners for projects requiring additional resources Referrals for clients when your project load is full
Never Stop Selling Everyone you meet is a potential client(or knows someone who could be a client) Don’t be afraid to strike up a conversationwith a stranger Always be professional when conductingbusiness in public places Perfect your elevator pitch
SThank you!For more information, to register with our agency or toreceive a copy of this presentation, please contact us:Jamie Douraghy – firstname.lastname@example.orgJess Bedford - email@example.com@artisanupdates | facebook.com/artisancreative