The real reason clients ask crazy, ridiculous things of you

annoying clients

I’m going to share with you a list of ridiculous demands my company has been asked of by clients recently. I’m sure you’ll nod along. You might even get a laugh or two…or a few tears, if you’ve been pushed close enough to the brink. But afterward, you might swear me your mortal enemy. Confused? Just hang in there and make sure you read this post to the end. It’s important. Have you experienced clients… Emailing at 3am expecting immediate

4 Big mistakes that make you look like a rookie entrepreneur

unhappy

Whether you’re a rookie or a veteran, everybody wants to look like a polished pro. Most of us know the basics: always use a contract under promise and over deliver spend within your means never burn bridges But we’re all human, too, and sometimes we make mistakes no matter how hard we work to avoid them. Sometimes we don’t even realize we’ve made a mistake until we’re up the creek without a paddle. I’m here today to toss you a

Take great, professional photos with these smartphones, apps, and accessories

smartphone

All creative freelancers constantly need new and engaging tools to enhance their trade. Thanks to the advent of the smartphone and social media, photography is the visual medium that generally benefits you the most. Virtually every type of creative can find photography useful in some capacity. Freelance and web developers might need headshots or landscape imagery while artists might need professional photos of their work. With so much competition, these fields require the best tools to get new clients and be

How to dominate any niche or industry

success sign

Dominating niches is actually pretty simple. It takes some legwork, and it takes hard work to get it going, but overall it’s pretty simple. Now, when I say “dominating a niche,” I mean you become a “go to” guy or gal for a specific industry. In our creative marketing agency, we’re starting to do this for a specific niche of food packaging. In the past, we’ve done it for fitness and a couple of other industries too. In fact, to

Why ‘doing work that matters’ doesn’t mean you have to quit your job

work that matters

Half a decade ago, I (along with half the world, it feels like) got caught up in the lifestyle business craze when I read Tim Ferris’ The Four Hour Workweek for the first time. Since then I’ve read dozens and dozens of books on self-help, entrepreneurship, lifestyle design, and more. And there’s one phrase that has really made the rounds. One that has turned into a bit of a buzzword in books and on the internet. And I totally understand why:

5 Systems that will turn your freelance design business into a well-oiled machine

Well-Oiled Machine

Running a freelance design business is one of the most fulfilling careers you can embark on. Think about it – you spend some time honing your design skills, and then use your skills to make an income, hopefully enough to support yourself full-time. And beyond doing work that you’re passionate about, you also have the luxury of working remotely from virtually anywhere in the world. Who wouldn’t love it right?! Mmm, I don’t mean to burst your bubble, but it

Find time in your busy schedule with this ONE mental shift

No time

How many times have you made this excuse? I would love to work on <insert side project>, but I just don’t have time. I used to say this too (more than I’d like to admit), but worse, I used to believe it. “But April,” you’re thinking, “it really is true!” I know. It’s easy to fall into the trap of believing that you’re out of control of all the varied obligations placed upon you in both your personal and professional

Why you should always have a contract – even for small jobs

Handshake

As creative freelancers and business owners, we all know written contracts are useful – no, necessary – when dealing with customers. After all, we’ve all been reading Graphic Design Blender, haven’t we? Whether it’s a $2,000 logo or a $20,000 web site, investing time and money on a service agreement is, as we’ve seen before, completely worthwhile. Why? It gives both parties an idea of how the relationship will be framed. It protects you in case the relationship breaks down.