Best Ways to Market Yourself as a Graphic Designer
Whether you are a freelancer or head of an advertising agency, there is always an opportunity to gain more exposure for your personal brand, your products and services. Here are 28 ways we think may help you.
- Create a product for Go Media’s Arsenal, gaining you excellent exposure among the design community.
- Create a “mini” version of your work and carry it, along with your business card, wherever you go. For example, a tiny photo book of your illustrations or a flash drive with product freebies on it.
- Pay it forward. Add value to someone else’s business and you’ll be rewarded handsomely. Comment on your favorite designer’s blog, share their content, link to their work. You never know, they may return the favor (think: retweet and mega exposure!). Or, another connection, like a click through from your blog comment, could end in an awesome relationship.
- Take a deep breath, then apply to be a guest speaker or artist at a conference. What? You’re not Michael Bierut? It’s okay. Some of the very best speakers are new to the field or facing challenges in their career.
- Direct Message someone you admire on Twitter and start a real conversation. Right now. (We’ll wait for you to return).
- Email a fellow designer friend and ask them to give you honest feedback on your portfolio. Heed their advice.
- Create a epic freebie or some other truly authentic content. Offer it on your site in exchange for a tweet or newsletter sign-up.
- Find a fellow designer/entrepreneur with similar goals. Meet up with them on Skype, have a coffee date regularly. Keep each other motivated and accountable.
- Identify a mentor. Treat them to lunch every month. Pay them back in whatever way you can.
- Ask for referrals and refer when necessary. You’ll build great partnerships that way.
- Shout-out new and loyal customers, send small gifts or notes to random fans. It not only builds faithful followers and connections, it’s all kinds of fun.
- Set up customer chat. Connect with your customers and clients on an authentic, emotional level when appropriate. Take the time and let them teach you about where your company or freelance business needs to go.
- Get in the habit of posting a piece of work, sketch, behind-the-scenes image on Facebook or Instagram. Remove any posts where blatant advertising is involved and replace them with personal posts. Show your followers who you really are.
- Create fun, branded stickers or pins. Spread ‘em like sunshine.
- Open your own Etsy or Society 6 shop. Make cool stuff and get recognized for it!
- Offer your expertise to fellow bloggers or podcasters. Offer to guest post or guest host.
- Start a meet-up group in your area. This could be as simple as gathering some friends with pencils and pens and a bar.
- Start a podcast or put yourself out there. Volunteer to go on one or start your own. It’s as easy as ordering some equipment on Amazon, you know.
- Write a really amazing tutorial or blog post (Hey! We’re looking for writers! Email us). Get that content out there!
- Get your personal brand nailed down. It’s really all about authenticity. Be yourself everyone else is taken.
- Start saying yes to everything you are afraid of. If you do, I will.
- Start participating in your local AIGA.
- Offer your services to your local college or university. Host a porfolio review, for example.
- Answer questions on a site like Quora. You never know who will go there to find an expert opinion.
- Learn SEO. If your website and blog aren’t optimized, you may be working hard but hardly working.
- Sponsor a design conference, set up shop there and start meeting people who will support you and help push you to greater heights.
- Come to WMC: Off-the-Grid. Learn, adventure and create some incredible relationships with creatives just like you (shameless-plug!)
Good luck friends!