If you have decided to become a freelance graphic designer, then you just can’t dive in and start immediately without being prepared. Remember that in whatever industry you try to enter, you need to be prepared in order to make sure you will succeed. Look at it as a battlefield. You can never go to the fight without the proper training and the proper battle gear. Same is true with the freelance graphic design field. You have to be ready or else you will fail.
Starting might be hard but if you are well- guided by fellow freelancers and if you try to know the things that you need to know, then it won’t be that hard for you. To make things a lot easier, we will give tips for neophyte freelance graphic designers. We do hope this can help you as you venture in the freelance design world. Read now and your dreams will be a click away.
1. Always be professional.
This is one thing that you should not forget. Always be professional in everything. Not just in dealing with clients but also in your works. You should keep promises. You should submit your work on time and make sure your outputs are of good quality.
2. Know proper client relations.
In a freelancing career, clients are very important. You won’t have a job if you would not do well with your clients. You won’t earn without them! Hence, you need to know how to establish a good relationship with your client. You should be able to consistently get new clients and retain the old ones. You should explain your design process well to them and treat them professionally. If you have disagreements, learn to remain professional and always respect them.
3. Have a diversified portfolio.
When you create your portfolio, make sure it is diversified. Allow it to show all your skills in designing. Make it broad yet concise. Also, make sure that you design your portfolio well. You have to show everyone that you are a good designer. Your own portfolio can even be an effective example for your work.
4. Think of the user and the client.
When you create your design, always think of the user. They are the ones who will look into your designs. Make sure that the users will be able to get the message of your design, the way your client wants it. Do not just design a project the way you like it. You have to do it in a manner that it will impress both the users and the client.
5. Look for inspiration.
Before starting a design, you have to look for inspiration so that you could creatively and uniquely make the project. It is always important for a designer to be inspired in order to come up with a great output.
6. Prioritize tasks.
When you productively procrastinate, it means that you do the most important things first. You need to learn how to prioritize tasks. And you also need to do away with procrastination. Finish what you can finish today. Work according to your schedule and avoid being distracted.
7. Choose your projects and clients.
It doesn’t mean that you need to accept all the jobs. Choose those which you know you can do and those which fit your qualifications. Make sure also that the client is reliable. You have to look deeper into a project before you accept it.
8. Always have a contract.
Do not ever forget to make a contract for every project you have. This is important to protect you and the client, too. This is an assurance for both parties that what you agreed will be implemented. Both of you should stick with the contract, too.
9. Sketch your ideas first.
It is always advisable to sketch your ideas first before you start working on it on the computer. This way, you will have more room to brainstorm and you could also think of different designs. You will also find it easier to start designing when you begin with sketching.
10. Know about the target audience.
You have to know the target audience first before you finalize your work. This is one of the important things you need to consider in your design for every group of people has different design preferences.
11. Use a to-do list.
A to-do list can help you to be organized. This can also help you a lot to make sure you can hit deadlines. You may also have some project management and time management applications that can guide you to monitor your time and tasks.
12. Effectively use social media.
Since you are just new, you need more exposure. You can use social networking sites to promote yourself. Instead of using it just for fun and entertainment, you use it to help you in your freelance design job. You can showcase some of your works there. You can also share and post relevant and informative items. This way, clients will know that you are a professional designer.
13. Learn from mistakes.
You are not perfect and there are some mistakes that you commit. You don’t have to stop working just because you committed a mistake. Let it be a learning experience for you. Do not feel so down whenever you do something wrong. Always learn to get up and start working again. Just make sure that you won’t commit the same mistake again.
14. Learn from criticisms.
When you are being criticized, do not just fight back. Think of what they said. It might help you improve. Learn from criticisms, too and do not be afraid to be criticized. If you learn how to face criticisms, you will become a better person and a more effective designer. Do not forget professionalism and respect. You have to take hold of those two in order to succeed in freelancing.
15. Stay healthy.
It doesn’t mean that just because you are a freelance designer and all your work is coming from the computer that you will just stay there all the time. Leave your computer once in a while. Go out and take a walk. Do some exercise. Get those healthy foods and take enough sleep. Your health is important because you won’t be able to work if you get sick.
It’s Your Turn Now
These tips will surely help you prepare for your freelance career. Remember that it is always better to be prepared rather than not. For professional freelance graphic designers, you might want to share your own tips to help newbie freelancers. We would appreciate it if you give additional tips in the comment section below.