Category Archives: How To

It’s Not Supposed To Be Easy

When I started selling logos online, it was a hard thing to do. We did not even know how much we should be charging for a “pre-designed” logo. Not a clue. There was a lot of exploratory work to be done. Through trial and error we eventually struck a formula that works for us.

All those who came after could just copy the formula. Or so they thought.

It’s the same in any industry. Any product or service. The real money is in innovation. If you do exactly what everyone else is doing you can make a living, but you will be scraping by.

That’s a given.

There’s already someone doing what you are doing, doing it longer and possibly better because they’ve ironed out some of the bumps you will soon run into. Why would anyone buy from you rather than from the leader? Would you buy from you? Honestly?

Making money online is supposed to be hard. There are many ways to make money online – and they all eventually become crowded as the path is beaten open. Eventually the money dries up. Well, actually no, the money just starts flowing to the innovator who found a better way.

Look at the design industry over the last ten years. Things that used to make money no longer does. The money is starting to flow elsewhere. Find the new money river and follow it until you run out of “beaten path”. Then start building. Make a new path. Be prepared to fail and start over.

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Selling In A Saturated Market

The online logo design shopper has an immense pool of logo design web sites to choose from.

They are all pretty much the same. Small differences in the price maybe. This one might have a better guarantee and that one perhaps offers more revisions, but those are not the considerations that will make the logo design shopper choose one over the other.

When confronted with overwhelming choice, the shopper does one of two things:

1. She goes for the top. Whoever is #1 on Google for “logo design”.

2. She buys where she feels safe.

If you are going to compete for the #1 spot on Google for “logo design”, then good luck to you.

For the rest of us, making her feel safe is the only realistic option. It’s a different approach than selling to someone who desperately needs what you sell. She doesn’t. You need to win her trust. The best way to do that is to show her (not tell her) that others are buying from you and are happy with your work. On BizLogo I decided to do that right in the header. A big picture of a smiling lady and her testimonial. It’s a real testimonial (the only kind you should use!) and there is a link to countless more. In my own estimation, testimonials and referrals sell more logos for BizLogo than our low prices, guarantee or any other feature.

The catch is: You have to generate testimonials by over-delivering. If the client only receives what she expects to receive, then testimonials will be hard to come by.

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Graphic Design CV’s (How To)

Your CV or resumé will be one of between 20 and 100 that the lady in human resources have to wade through today. And let’s be honest, it’s a terribly boring job, looking at CV after CV. You studied this, worked there, you live for graphic design, yada yada. They’re all the same.

The lady in human resources is tempted to open, scan for something interesting and drop your CV on the “no” pile.

In fact, that is exactly what she is doing. Half of the CV’s on the “no” pile were not read.

Is that unfair to the applicants?

Maybe it is, but maybe graphic design companies rightly expect more from applicants who claim that they have creativity wired into their DNA.

This probably applies to creatives applying for any job, but I’ll stick to graphic design.

Given your proficiency with graphic design software, why do you send your CV in Word format? You can design, right? You can use awesome graphics to sell stuff? Show the lady in human resources that you are not a CV sending drone intent on adding to her misery. Make her smile. Make her remember your CV. And, for the love of Pete, send it in PDF format!

A word of caution: Don’t go ape either. You’re a designer, but also a professional. Keep it light.

While we are on the topic…

I occasionally receive email applications like this one:

“hi andre. attachjed please find my cv and sum examples of my sum of my designs. thanks. julie.”

Dear Julie,

Did you fall on your head as a child?

Is this a temporary impairment or will the emails that you send to my clients also come out of your arse? I’m sure that you are a wonderful person, but the home for the criminally incompetent is further down the street, on the left. If you have any trouble finding it, just ask the bum with the crazy eyes. He also is a really wonderful person, once you get to know him.

Spend time crafting your intro email. It is at least as important as your CV. It’s my glimpse at the person behind the qualifications – behind the formal face of the CV. Julie wasted a perfect opportunity here. Instead, she illustrated a complete lack of pride in her work.

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Applying for a Graphic Design Job

Applying for a graphic design job is as easy as sending in your résumé.

Usually.

When advertising a vacancy for a graphic designer I make a point of including a specific instruction. Something like “please include a PDF document with 5 logos from your portfolio”. About half of the applicants will ignore that bit and just send a résumé.

50%!

I’m truly baffled by this.

Why do they bother?

It does make my job easier though. I can flat-out delete 50% of applications and focus on the ones that can pay attention and follow instructions.

Don’t disqualify yourself before your résumé was ever opened.

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