11 personalities traits of a good freelance mentor

On Monday, we discussed the importance of finding a freelance mentor; someone who can help you and guide you as you build your design business. But how do you find a good mentor? Sure, there are plenty of people out there who are willing to help you for a fee. Their intentions are probably mostly good. But how do you know if you’re getting a great mentor at a good price instead of just a money-hungry businessman? Here are 8

How to ensure your design portfolio is attracting clients

When looking for work, the advantage we have as designers is the ability to actually show what kind of work we can do, rather than just trying to explain it on a resume. And just like presenting a resume, you want to make sure you put your best foot forward when it comes to showing your portfolio. I thought I’d pass along a few tips that have helped me in developing mine. Make a web portfolio A website that showcases

How long should a designer fight a client about a poor design decision?

If you’ve been designing for long, you’ve experienced a scenario like I am going through right now: You’ve met with your client, discussed the details of the project, signed a contract, and made some major progress on your project. Now, significantly through your process, your client hits you with a request that just makes your teeth hurt. It’s one of those requests that goes against everything you’ve ever learned about good design. Whether it’s auto-starting music on their web site,

The truth about what clients look for in a designer

Have you ever wondered what makes a client choose one designer over another? Well, wonder no more, my friends. Today, I’d like to tell you the truth about what clients look for in a designer. The myths First, it’s important we understand a few of the myths that designers have come to believe about being hired by a client. Myth 1: Clients only hire designers with years of experience A lot of designers (mostly really new designers) think they don’t

58 Topics to write about on your design blog

If you have a design blog, I can almost guarantee that at one point or another, you’ve hit a brick wall when it comes to content. After all, producing great content on a daily or weekly basis can be more difficult than it sounds. So today, I would like to offer a useful list of topics you can write about on your design blog. I’m sure I’ll leave some out, so add your suggestions in the comments. 58 topics to

Master your elevator pitch and win more design clients

A couple days ago, we discussed which job title you should put on your business card as a freelance designer. That got me thinking about how important it is to be able to explain your business to other people quickly and effectively. The most common technique of mastering how to talk about your business is called an elevator pitch. If you’re unfamiliar with the idea, here’s where it basically comes from: Imagine you were on vacation or downtown and you

What job title should a freelance designer use?

Have you ever wondered what title you should give yourself? If you’ve been a freelance designer for long, it’s likely you have encountered a situation where you need to have a title. Perhaps you were trying to print business cards. Maybe you were trying to tell someone what you do for a living and had a hard time explaining what you are. If any of these scenarios sound familiar, read on. Today we’ll suggest a few options for which title

How to make a killer first impression when meeting your design clients online

We’ve written a few posts here about making a good first impression with your design clients. But most of what we have written is based on the assumption that you will meet your client in person to make that impression. What about clients you meet online? I don’t know about you, but it’s getting to a point where I have more clients that I never meet with face to face, but only in an online setting. Today’s post will cover