It seems like everybody now has a copy of Photoshop, Illustrator or some form of design software. The internet has made once exclusive design tools accessible to everyone.
It’s not hard to imagine that people might start to ask themselves why they would pay you to do something they could do at home.
Technology seems to act as the great equalizer.
If everyone has the same tools to work with, designers have to offer something that people can’t do themselves. Something they don’t have.
With websites offering five dollar logos, and free design software everywhere you look, what is it that will make people come to you?
How can you survive in a world where everybody thinks they are a designer? Here are a few simple suggestions. Add your tips by leaving a comment.
People can get the tools to design for themselves. What they can’t get are your incredible ideas. If you have a portfolio full of thoughtful, well conceived ideas, people will come to you for your creative potential, as well as technical ability.
A note from Preston: I agree. Ideas separate you from monkeys with mouses. (tweet that)
2. Go above and beyond.
Adding value is a quick way to stand out from the competition. For example:
If you’re doing up a logo for someone, send along two or three mock ups near the end.
You could do a corporate identity mock up, or simple one item mock ups.
Something like that might have taken them all day to do up, but only takes you a couple of minutes.
Mock ups are a great way to make things more “real” for clients. It helps them get excited about the work. When they are excited about it they are more likely to be excepting of your bill.
There are thousands of ways to go above and beyond when working with your clients. What tactics do you use?
3. Be too good to resist.
This doesn’t just mean you have to be good; you have to let people see how good you are as well.
Make sure your portfolio has all of your best and most up to date work in it. Make the portfolio itself beautiful. Choose a theme for your online portfolio that matches your work and your style. Looking at all of your great work reassures clients why they are shelling out their money for a professional designer.
4. Give Back.
Give back to the design community and your clients.
This can mean anything for you like; blogging, uploading freebies, templates and tutorials to your website or a little free design work for charitable causes. All of this helps to make you the first person people think of when they think design.
I want to hear from you!
What do you do to stay relevant and keep people coming back for your design work in a world where “everyone is a designer”?
Leave a comment on this post and let us know how you do it.