We expanded our Designer For Hire program so that great 3D design talent could connect with client demand. But designing “for hire” can come with different rules and challenges than designing in-house or as part of an agency. For designers looking to dip a toe or jump all the way into working as a freelancer, this is the resource for you.
Divided into five distinct sections, between which author Sara Horowitz says you will move nonlinearly as that is the way of the freelance life, The Freelancer’s Bible offers readers a well-considered, thorough guide through the challenges of driving your own career and being your own boss. As Sara writes, “Freelancing’s inherent flexibility may offer unprecedented freedom to live life on your own terms[.] With research and planning, you may find an exciting new life is within reach.”
The book begins with advice for finding your strengths and listing your goals for pursuing freelance work. From there the book dives deep into the five major categories: Getting Started, Getting Work, Growing Your Business, Managing Your Business, and Your Business and Your Community.
One of the most thoughtful chapters is devoted to the topic of finding, and keeping, clients. The chapter begins with outlining six fundamentals of influence and persuasion. Social psychologist Robert Cialdini has recognized that we all use them and once you know to look for them you will see them everywhere.
Reciprocity: Sharing information and connections will grow your network and more importantly, as Sara writes, will “build your love bank account.” An example of reciprocity is talking up and referring others in your industry; they will likely reciprocate.
Consistency: Showing a sustained interest in certain elements of your work will always build towards trust as well as naturally grow your network.
Social Validation: This can be shown in the form of testimonials from previous clients, references and even your social media presence. These all can suggest that you are worth choosing because others have chosen you.
Liking: When you meet new clients look for a common connection but be genuine. Ask them questions. This usually leads to finding something in common and builds trust.
Authority: Be proud of your qualifications which you can showcase in your resume, your website or portfolio, your Designer For Hire profile, your memberships and your client list.
Scarcity: Limited editions, small class sizes, busy schedules–scarcity is used in all of these scenarios to drive action and it works for driving people to book you too.
In addition to the crazy amount of tips Sara and co-author Toni Sciarra-Poynter provide, they also include a healthy list of additional resources, such as:
I highly recommend this book for anyone, even industry veterans, pursuing the freelance life.