How to promote your graphic design portfolio
The graphic design industry can be a competitive business, especially with the influx of people wanting to freelance or run their own business. However, the demand for graphic design is also on the rise and so there is plenty of opportunity out there if you know where to look. Promoting your graphic design portfolio is key to winning those clients, but where to begin? These top tips will get you started, without breaking the bank.
First things first, you need to set yourself up a website. If you don’t have an online portfolio then you don’t have anything to promote! People want to be able to browse through the work you have already done and read through testimonials, whilst also learning more about you and your business. Before you start promoting your graphic design portfolio make sure your website is up to scratch. You should include:
- Previous work
- Testimonials from previous clients
- An about page detailing who you are and what your business does
- Contact details including an address (if possible), contact numbers and an email or contact form
- Details of the different services you provide as a graphic designer
Once your online graphic design portfolio is live make sure you keep it updated with your most recent and relevant work. Ask your previous clients for testimonials where possible; some may even offer to link back to your portfolio from their own website.
Social media marketing is an essential road to go down when promoting your graphic design portfolio. However, it is important to remember that this type of marketing can take both time and money. With this in mind, consider putting together a social media marketing plan instead of going in blindly. How many hours a day/week do you want to put into promoting your business on social media? Which social networks will work best for you? Instead of signing up to every single different social networking site and spreading yourself too thin, consider where you will find your customer base. Linkedin is full of business owners, Pinterest is great for artistic industries, and Twitter is also rife with opportunities. You may also want to consider using a scheduling tool, such as Hootsuite or Buffer, in order to cut down the time it takes for you to promote your graphic design portfolio.
Become a thought leader
One of the best ways to promote your graphic design business is to become well-known in the industry. There are several ways you can go about this, including networking and engaging with fellow business owners. You don’t always have to attend business brunches if you want to become a thought leader in the graphic design industry, however. Guest blogging is an excellent way of showcasing your skills, talent and knowledge to an audience who may never have discovered you before. Look for websites and blogs where your client base is likely to be found, approach those websites with a pitch, and share your knowledge with the world. It is important to know who your client base is if you want to go down this route, to ensure you’re targeting those who would genuinely be interested in working with you. If you design nightclub leaflets then look for a website dedicated to nightclub owners and the music scene. If you mainly work with luxury businesses then look for high quality business advice websites. Build up your network of contacts by becoming a thought leader and the clients will come knocking.
Promoting your graphic design portfolio can take time, but it doesn’t need to cost a fortune. Set aside a few hours each week to focus on promotion and you’ll soon notice a difference. Remember to always account for the time you’ve spent on marketing and factor that into the costs of running your business. Before long you’ll find the perfect amount of marketing investment to attract new business!
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