If you're a freelance graphic designer, you know the market for your services is tough. The web makes it easy to pitch to companies – so easy that competition is fierce and often the inferior bidder wins. How can you succeed when you're fighting what might be termed “buyer apathy”?
It's easier than you think. In fact, if you make the following three decisions for your business, you stand a great chance of succeeding as a graphic designer in the competitive online market.
It's easy to be all things design for all companies. That's what most freelance graphic designers are, and that's why the market is so diluted. Instead, specialize in a specific niche of graphic design. Doing so can help you make a name as the go-to expert in that niche. And while you might think it will be harder to find jobs as a specialist, the converse is true: It will be easier to find jobs because your marketing efforts are focused. You're only one person, and you can't be everywhere at once, so don't try to be. Instead, be where the money is.
2. Set goals and track them
Set daily, weekly, monthly and annual income goals. Track your progress each and every day. Doing so will help you identify shortcomings and areas you can improve your efficiency. It will also help you stay on track for your larger timespan goals and reward yourself when you have a good day. If you want to make $100,000 annually, you'll have to make in the neighborhood of $400 every day, five days per week. Breaking it down like this helps you stay on track and achieve your overall goals.
3. Double your fees
I know, I know ... it's hard enough to land jobs when the fakers are stealing assignments at ludicrously low rates. But you want clients who value quality and are willing to pay for it. I absolutely, 100 percent guarantee you that your lowest-paying clients will take up the largest amount of your time – and you'll constantly be going back to compete for jobs because your earnings will remain paltry. Much better to wait for a few great clients who respect your work and allow you to make good money in good time – for a good job, of course – than to be subservient to pocket changers who waste your time.
If you make these decisions today, I promise that you will make more money, doing less work, and be a much happier freelance graphic designer.
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