Even the most experienced graphic design professionals can find it intimidating to get new graphic design clients. It can definitely be a challenge but despite what you might think, it is not as difficult as it seems.
There are quite a few different ways and things you can do to find new graphic design clients. It could be anything from your take on a proposal approach to how you build and maintain client relationships…and it is all relevant to how to get a graphic design client.
In this article, you will get the know-how on how to find graphic design clients.
1. Establish your value clearly
What sets you apart from your competition is the value you provide to your potential clients. Your chances of winning more graphic design clients will increase when you are able to clearly communicate your value. To be able to do this you need to establish what value you put forward in your graphic design offerings
You can do this by asking yourself a few questions like the ones below:
- What type of results have you provided from previous graphic design projects for past clients?
- What is your experience in graphic design?
- As a graphic designer, what makes you and your work unique?
- What can you provide your clients that sets you apart from your competition?
For instance, if you have experience doing graphic design in certain fields (technology sector, health sector, media, hospitality, lifestyle, or fin-tech). You can target those potential industries to get more clients because you already have experience within them and that can greatly appeal to potential clients and their graphic design wants and needs.
Once you understand your value and what you can bring to the table you need to be able to communicate it to potential graphic design clients.
This can be achieved by including awards on your graphic design portfolio, sharing specific results from previous graphic design projects, or taking advantage of your experience in your previous pitches and proposals. Learn from your past experience and make the approach more attractive and engaging to get graphic design clients.
2. Ain't no shame in the asking for referrals game
If you already have some ecstatic graphic design clients, feel free to ask them for a referral. You should approach the client(s) in an open manner and be honest. Let them know that you are always on the lookout for new clients and that you would really appreciate their referral.
An official referral or review can really add to your credibility as a graphic designer and your graphic design business. While It may seem like it would be uncomfortable for both yourself and your client to directly ask for a referral, recommendation, or review it is quite a normal practice. In developing client and business relationships, referrals are valuable.
3. Build yourself an impressive portfolio
Your portfolio is essentially a gateway to getting new graphic design clients. Don't think twice about it if you want to know how to get graphic design clients through your well-done portfolio.
This is where you are able to truly showcase the value behind your graphic design work in all its glory. What you need to do is highlight the work itself with a well-told story. Explain the process itself, what issues were at hand, and how you came to a solution.
Be sure to update your portfolio regularly but with only your most stellar work, this way you can attract the type of client your graphic design work deserves. The value behind your portfolio can drastically change what you can charge graphic design clients, the value is in the quality of your work, thus the importance of having a well-showcased portfolio.
4. Create attractive & engaging content… even if you are a graphic designer
This is often an overlooked way to get graphic design clients but it is actually really effective. Writing articles, blogs and creating templates is a great way for potential graphic design clients to find you. It can also really give your graphic design business a big boost in reputation.
Being able to create engaging content about graphic design and the associated topics can solidify you as a strong web design professional. And if you write about specific industries you can attract these types of clients who are looking for a graphic designer just like you.
Now, if you are not the greatest writer or you don't have your SEO game on point, you can hire a freelance blogger for the writing or you can work with a digital marketing agency to really get SEO results running and new graphic design clients pouring in!
A digital marketing agency or growth marketing agency specializing in SEO and creating content. It may seem expensive but hiring a digital marketing agency to take on the content for you is a smart business decision. Especially if you have no experience in creating content, never mind engaging in SEO-driven content.
5. Stay on top of your social media game
Social media is a powerful tool in your arsenal to get graphic design clients. Potential clients may assume you are no longer working as a graphic designer if there are no regular posts on your Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or any other social media platform that shows off your graphic design work and business.
Potential graphic design clients are looking for captivating posts that are interesting to look at with a message and story behind the image or video. Speaking of video, social media has taken a major liking to videos in 2023. Video posts on social media will be the most attractive to potential clients across many industries.
If you are not social media savvy you can hire a digital marketing agency to help with social media marketing. It is a smart business decision and should be looked at as an investment into your business's future and the gain of new graphic design clients.
If you feel like you can keep up with your social media posts and the production of video posts, the help of a digital marketing agency may be something to consider later down the line when you simply cannot keep up.
6. Network… it is never enough
Graphic designers tend to view networking as a waste of time, but if you view it from the perspective of mutual benefit, then networking takes on a whole new meaning. You should intend to engage people with the intention to get to know them first, networking is a common business practice…hello LinkedIn.
Avoid the proposal approach and think about how you may be able to help them or provide a graphic design solution(s). Is there an interesting article or blog you recently read or wrote something yourself that might appeal to them?
Look at ways to connect with these individuals on an authentic level and be open, you may be pleasantly surprised by where the relationship may go and what business opportunities may develop from the encounter. In the future, you might work with those people, or they might refer you to someone either way it is a win-win.
When you provide your potential graphic design client with the value behind the graphic design work you are opening doors of opportunity to get new graphic design clients. This can lead to a future that is full of success. Work to build relationships that make potential graphic design clients feel like they are making an investment by choosing your graphic design service(s) and that they are getting the best solutions, value, and quality.