Over the past couple of years, I’ve met with hundreds of potential clients in person or virtually. I’ve learned a thing or two about the questions you should be asking when hiring a designer to make sure they are a good fit for you! As a designer, I also know the questions that I appreciate being asked by a potential client.
If you’re on the search for a potential designer, here’s where to start:
1. Understand what you NEED.
To start, you need to establish what you’re looking for in order to look for it! Seems obvious, I know, but this step is often overlooked. Do you need a new brand and logo? Or a website, too? Do you want collateral design items such as a brochure or email template to go with it? Do you need brand strategy help in addition to the design stuff? Are you also looking for someone to coach you in your business? Knowing what you need will help you find the perfect designer for you to provide it.
2. Start the search.
To begin the search, I recommend the following ways to research:
- Ask other business owners whose brands/websites you like and whose opinion you trust.
- Ask for recommendations in online spaces like Honeybook or business owner Facebook groups such as Savvy Business Owners or Rising Tide Society.
- Search on Pinterest using keywords like “Showit Website Designer”.
- Look at websites you LOVE, and scroll down to the footer and look for the designer (often listed in the site credits).
3. Review their website and social media to no end!
So, you’ve found a designer you’re interested in - YAY! Now is the time for some serious internet stalking. Read their blog, look at their portfolio, testimonials, and clients. Spend time on their website. After all, this is like their “digital storefront”. Review their social media too for an often more “up to date” version of what they are working on.
Questions to ask yourself:
- Is my desired style reflected in their work? (the style they use for clients AND for their own brand)
- Do they offer all the design things that I need for my business?
- Do they seem knowledgeable about what they do?
- Can I afford the investment?
- Do I see the potential for a connection?
4. Schedule a Call.
Most designers offer a free consultation call to potential new clients. These calls usually last about 20 to 30 minutes. This is an opportunity for you to get to know their process and offerings, and for them to get to know your needs. This is your time to ask whatever questions you’d like and to see if this person is a good fit for your business! The designer will also likely have a lot of questions for you to help them decide if they are the best person for your project. Usually, after a call, they will send you a proposal laying out exactly what is included in the package you discussed.
Questions to cover during a consultation call:
- What is included in the package I’m interested in?
- What is the turnaround time?
- What is the design process like?
- How much is the investment?
- How are payments made?
- Have you worked with businesses in my industry or a similar industry?
- And of course, cover a little “get to know you” stuff too! This is someone you will be working very closely with, so it’s always good to know that you’ll click!
Some of these questions might be answered on their website. This is just a starting point! It’s a good plan to make some notes about what you’d like to talk about before the call.
5. Look for chemistry.
You know how with good friends, you often just CLICK! The person you hire to brand your business needs to be someone you’re comfortable with. Most clients who hire me like my work, but also felt a connection with me that showed us that we would work well together. Between the designer’s website, social media, and your consultation call, you can usually tell if this person is right for your business. Do they seem like they will get excited about what you’re doing? Do you think they can help you with those burning design issues that you just can’t figure out? Or, are you just another paycheck?
6. Follow up with them.
From a designer’s perspective, this is the most important step. Not every consultation call or inquiry leads to a booking, and we are ok with that. For anyone who you interview for a service job, do let them know whether or not you want to work with them.
If the answer is no, a simple email like the example below would work perfectly…
“Thank you so much for taking your time to meet/chat with me. I really appreciate it, and I enjoyed getting to know you and your business! After careful consideration, I’ve decided to go a different direction with my project. Again, thank you for your time!”
Or, if you do want to work with them, I always love getting excited emails, like this one I received from a client last week …
“Hey, Elizabeth! Yes, I’d love to work with you, and I want to go ahead and book this in! 🙂 How do we proceed? I’m so beyond excited! Thank you!”
I hope this helps you on your quest for the perfect designer for your company! He or she is out there, I promise! 😉
If you’re interested in working with me for branding and/or website design, I’d love to chat! Click here to schedule a discovery call, and let’s talk business!
December 7, 2017