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It Is Getting Unreal!

Discussion in 'Graphic Design Forum:' started by TomTom55, Jun 20, 2016.

  1. TomTom55

    TomTom55 New Member

    I have been both a freelancer as well as working in-house at a printing company as graphic designer since 2009. Since then I have seen things slide and slide and slide regarding how clients treat our line of work, how they consider our worth to be.

    I am finding it increasingly more difficult to obtain work even with my high-end portfolio website and heaps of previous content clients.

    For example, I was told this earlier today from a potential client; 'Thanks Tom, however I will be working with someone else, as your quote is much higher than others..'

    Now at least they were nice about it, but my quote was even on the verge of what I would consider me underselling myself.

    Have any of the suers of this forum noticed such things, and what can be done to get around it?
  2. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    There is ALWAYS going to be someone willing to work or less especially now we have places that treat designers like disposable pens, well the services on the site only cost a little more than one so it's a polite way of putting it.
  3. TomTom55

    TomTom55 New Member

    It has been increasing though over the past few years, we can all see that. There are people asking for 'a professional logo design in 24 hours' for as little as £7 for instance, and of course an almost infinite amount of bs like that to be found. It has recently started to really get to me though, and I am not sure if things are going to get easier from here on out. The problem is that the general notion of how much we are valued as designers among potential clients is and will keep falling. There are 'designers' out there who will use templates or rip other designs off and turn around that 'design' in 2 hours.
    I am ranting I know, and it is not even a constructed rant, more of a rambling one lol. I am just cheesed off today for this reason I guess..
  4. hankscorpio

    hankscorpio Moderator Staff Member

    I just thank them for the opportunity to quote and send them a basket of muffins.
  5. scotty

    scotty Well-Known Member

    Do you do Krispy Kreme @hankscorpio?
    If so, how much for a logo please?
  6. hankscorpio

    hankscorpio Moderator Staff Member

    I'll do Krispy Kreme, but I won't be happy about it, but you'll be happy with it so that will make me happy.
  7. hankscorpio

    hankscorpio Moderator Staff Member

    You have to ask yourself, is this the client you really want to have? Chances are they won't even pay the guy that came in at €7 a logo.

    I know from experience, they're not the clients I want to deal with. Chasing payment, arguing over prices (that were agreed) - it's all a bit too much.

    Solution: find better clients.

    One thing I do is I order a business cards and leaflets from the 'online competitors' and when a client comes in looking to get something printed or designed, then I give them a quote. Some turn around and say 'hey, I can get it online for half that price!!!"

    It's at this point, I have a selection of my printed/design items in one hand, and the same printed piece/design in the other hand from the online competitors.

    They instantly see what they get when they work with me. The quality of the print, the paper, the revised designs, the conversation of a how a piece developed is right in front of them.

    They don't get that service with online providers, or unprofessional designers who can't setup a print job etc.

    Set yourself apart from the competition by making yourself visually more appealing by providing quality samples and examples of your work.

    Get some logos you designed mounted on 5mm board, or on a canvas - order 50 pens printed with a company logo that you designed etc.
    Paul Murray likes this.
  8. @GCarlD

    @GCarlD Well-Known Member

    Welcome to my world. Truth is, there is no real answer, and no there is nothing that can be done to get around it. BUT, it all depends on the type of clients you are trying to attract, the bigger the client / business the harder it is to get their attention *cough* money *cough*. On the other hand, the average person in the general public, does not know or have the understanding of the value of a professional designer, they are just looking for what they can get for as reasonable (cheap) of a price as possible. They do not see why they should spend £300 on a logo design when they can get it for £50. They think their £50 logo is great because it has lots of pretty colours in it and they feel good because they have 'saved' themselves £250. They haven't got a clue! It can be our job to educate these people, but whether they'll listen is another matter. It is far more productive to just avoid these people all together.

    Yes I have officially joined your rant.

    I also feel us designers don't help each other enough in a more efficient way. Don't get me wrong, we all provide each other with priceless help & advice that will last us a lifetime, but I get the sense that once a designer is 'getting there' doing ok/well that's it, it's all for him/herself (which is perfectly understandable as that's how the world is), but it would be nice, albeit unrealistic, for us to create a domino effect, to help each other to 'step up the ladder', or at least get on it, by maybe pointing a fellow designer in the right direction to a client that requires our services. But the attitude is why should I, when I had to deal with the struggle of getting this client for myself, why should I lose out on money etc etc etc. Which is fine. Business is business. And yes I have completely contradicted myself. I just know that my aim as a designer is not to make it as some big time graphic designer making grands upon grands, it is to help other struggling designers, whilst making a decent living, as I know I was once in their shoes.
  9. ash

    ash Member

    Hi Carl,
    I was wondering about that, because sometimes I get a client for whom I do not have the right expertise or there is a location problem, or suddenly the workload becomes too much. My main problem is I would not know who to turn to. I only know 3 programmers I would recommend, 2 Photographers and so on> I sadly do not know any other designer to an extend to which I would want to pass a client on (which makes me sad right now :( )

    So maybe we could have a showcase? or something that would help to cross work on projects? I figured out a few skill sets of different members, but it sounds that they are fairly busy and I would not like to intrude :( ...

    and by the way I do agree with the above statements, that that might not be the client you want to get involved with. I once had to chase a client for two years to get payment. And two never payed at all -.-*
    @GCarlD likes this.
  10. scotty

    scotty Well-Known Member

    I find some of the bigger companies try it on because they're, well, BIG and they think you want them on your CV.
    Bugger that!

    I had a fancy client in Knitesbridge who everyone will have heard of.

    Fancy Client: "What's you hourly rate?"
    Me: "Two chickens"
    Fancy Client: "Really!? In Knitesbridge the going rate is one chicken."
    Me: (Thinks) "Yeah, right."

    I actually do try to help out fellow designers whenever I can as I believe in karma and all that shit.
    Only today I came across a gig that wasn't quite my thing so I pushed it towards another designer I know who it did suit who has just started out freelance.
    I also sometimes do skill trades where I'll do something for another designer in exchange for their skills.

    I don't tend to have that problem with people expecting something for nothing but I think that's because most of my clients are ones I've worked with for a long time or come to me via recommendation.
    Anyhow, I don't really need to work as I gat all the Krispy Kreme I can eat for free from @hankscorpio. ;)
  11. hankscorpio

    hankscorpio Moderator Staff Member

    You only get the Krispy Kreme basket when you turn down one of my tenders... and lets face it, you're hardly going to turn down giving me money.

    It's your call, give me your money or get Krispy Kreme baskets...
    scotty likes this.
  12. Paul Murray

    Paul Murray Moderator Staff Member

    I find this a lot, I even had it with a potential new (big) client. Essentially they were trying to find someone who could give them a better final product in terms of aesthetic and ux design, but didn't want to pay the amount that was required.

    I just refuse and save myself a lot of time and headaches. If they can't tell the difference between your work and the work of someone half the price, they're not a client you want on your books and you lose nothing by sending them on their way. A lot of clients seem to be of the opinion that we as designers will be grateful for any work at all, when in fact we're providing a valuable skill-based service to their business.
  13. scotty

    scotty Well-Known Member

    Hmmmmm? o_O
  14. @GCarlD

    @GCarlD Well-Known Member

    It's good to hear I'm not the only one that passes on work from time to time, although I still try to be involved to a degree to ensure everything goes as smoothly possible, especially with the less experienced in our industry. But I am happy to provide opportunities when I can, as they need the most help! It can be risky, as obviously experience is key to achieving a professional outcome, so things can go wrong, but as someone else mentioned I believe in karma, and it's funny how things can course correct and put you on a better path. Sometimes the mistakes of others (& yourself), produce an even better outcome! Also, the fact that I never had this kind of help myself, everything I have achieved so far & any money I have made, has been from just me and my hard graft alone (get out the violins right? lol).

    If you don't know any other designers, you're in the right place; you can do as I sometimes do and pass on work to members on here. I PM both experienced and the lesser experienced members on here, depending on the project, and offer them the odd job from time to time. Sometimes it doesn't come to fruition, for similar reasons as you've mentioned (too busy and what not), but at least I know I tried and offered. Also, I don't know anyone here either, I just choose who to contact after looking through their portfolios, or I may contact them and ask them to send me a link to their work if they do not have one in their sig. Other times I'll ask if they have done anything similar to *said project* and make a decision from there.

    PS. I am far from someone that is overwhelmed with design projects to even really be in a position of offer work opportunities, but I still do when I can, as it helps all parties involved as well as the client both in the short and long run.

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