Creating awesome design work and letting it sit online isn't enough to build a name for yourself.
To get recognized you have to promote yourself and build a personal brand.
This post is for any designer who wants to get more recognition and create a brand around their work. Digital designers,
interface designers, print & graphics designers all need exposure to land gigs and build clients.
I'll cover the fundamentals of personal branding to help you create a recognizable entity around yourself and
your amazing design work. Nothing happens overnight but with perseverance you will see results over time.
The center for your personal brand is your website. This is ultimately your personal space to promote your life, your work, and who you are as a person.
But too many designers follow the trend of "simple white minimalism" and keep their portfolios barren of anything.
This is the wrong way to go for many reasons.
- Simple minimalist sites don't leave an impact on visitors
- Your site will look exactly the same as hundreds of others
- It's tougher to create a personal identity
You can do really well with a simple portfolio site if you customize
it with your own features. Drop illustrations, icons, or photos of
yourself into different pages. Use custom text. Write amazing copy
and create an experience that people remember.
Somehow your portfolio site needs to stand out and be memorable.
If you're a UI designer then it should definitely be a well-designed haven for your work.
The type of site you should avoid is the plain white minimalist homepage with a gallery of work,
no info about yourself, and no pages explaining who you are.
If you've had your website designed quite few time ago, it may be time to consider a redesign of your website.
If you think your website needs to look more attractive, consider these 7 red flags that indicate it is time:
1. Page taking too much time to load ?
If your website pages are taking longer than a couple of seconds to load,
you will want to redesign your site so that it can be optimized for faster page loading.
2. Search Rankings are Poor?
If you're finding it difficult to locate your website via popular search engines, then so are your customers.
With a website redesign, you can incorporate popular keywords, relevant meta-descriptions, etc.
which will enhance search ranking performance.
3. Bounce Rates Have Increased?
If you've noticed your bounce rates have increased, this is a strong indicator
the something isn't working well for your site visitors, and changes will need to be done to your website.
4. Your Website Design Looks Out of Date? Compared to Your Competitors
If your website design doesn't include any up to date design trends and
it falls behind the eight ball in terms of look and design, compared to your competitors,
it is a sign that your site needs a redesign.
5. Your Site Is Not Device Friendly?
Mobile search by today's consumers is consistently on the rise, so if your website
is not mobile friendly you will want to redesign it to be so.
6. Your Business Brand Has Changed?
If your business brand has undergone some reconstruction, but
your website has remained the same, you will need to update your website,
so that your branding remains consistent.
7. Your Website Is Broken?
If you are finding a number of broken links, or error codes, throughout your webpages,
this can be a true tell sign that your website needs work.
If your website does not meet the needs of your customers or your business,
your website needs a redesign. A stale website will only result in loss
of profit for your online company, so it's worth investing some time to redesign your site now.
Launching a photography portfolio site is an absolute necessity to get your work out there.
But it's not a task that everyone wants to deal with.
That's why platforms like ePrant can be so valuable.
It lets you create your own portfolio site geared towards photography where you can add photos
quickly and organize the layout with ease.
If you're a photographer with little-to-no technical background then the ePrant photography setup is an excellent choice.
Let's delve a bit deeper into how ePrant works and what makes it so great for professional photography websites.
The process of actually building & launching a portfolio site is much easier on ePrant.
Everything is managed internally so you're only working with their platform.
heir detailed guide covers the entire setup process but I'll quickly break it down into bite-sized chunks.
Register your domain through ePrant. This is your .com address that people type to visit your site
Pick a site template with a stylish design.
Add content to the homepage to show off your photographs.
Create navigation links to internal pages(bios, contact details, etc)
Tweak extra features like SEO optimization, image galleries, or slideshows all from within ePrant
With ePrant you can literally do everything in one place so you don't
need multiple accounts to manage domains, emails, or hosting via different companies.
You can manage all this stuff from one clean ePrant dashboard.
If you're a photographer (or working to become one) and you don't have a portfolio
online then you'll definitely want to launch one. The only question is how to get it online.
The reason ePrant works so well is because it's newbie-friendly and caters to non-technical users.
Photographers might know a lot about Adobe Photoshop for retouching,
but that doesn't mean they'll know anything about Apache servers or PHP/MySQL coding.
Small businesses can be the most loyal and valuable customers to a freelance designer.
They often need repeat work and can grow to trust a single designer if needed.
I want to share tips and resources for working on small business design projects.
It's vital that you handle the project, the client, and
the creative process in a personal way to work best with small business owners.
If you can land great clients you should be willing to go above and beyond for their needs.
In the long run this can translate to lots of repeat business and word of mouth recommendations to other business owners.
Business owners hire a designer for their expertise. But designers don't
know everything about the small business world, so it's important to work
together with the client to plan each step of the process.
Close collaboration should occur throughout the entire process but especially
in the early planning stages. You need to gather information about what the
client expects in their website.
Be willing to ask questions that relate to user experience.
Should their homepage include lots of photos? Should contact information
appear in the header? What about different pages and links in the navigation?
The answers will be different for each client and you need this information before designing any wireframe or mockup.
Also think critically about the differences of each small business.
A law firm website will be different than a local printing business.
Visitors on a law firm site are looking for legal specialties, contact info,
and maybe reviews. Visitors on a printing site are looking for technicalities,
location, and contact info.
Many content requirements will be consistent with all small businesses.
But some need to place more prominence on certain features. Gather this information
from the client first so you can deliver exactly what they need.
Facebook is the most used online social media platform in the world today,
followed by Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google Plus. The Stats in February
showed that Facebook reached more that 1 billion users worldwide and it's rapidly increasing.
So don't miss out... seize the opportunity now... and make the most of Facebook to
achieve your more sales using online channels.
In this Blog, we outline some great tips on how to turn your Facebook fans into customers.
Let's dive in...
Tip #1: Coupons For Your Facebook Fans
The use of coupons is highly recommended if you're promoting your business services
on Facebook. Coupons should not be mistaken for Discounts. Discounts are
considered to be a 'hard sell', whereas Coupons are more a 'soft sell'.
With Coupon, Facebook fans don't feel pressured to buy at a particular date.
They can take their time to browse on your website and then make a purchase or
enquire to redeem their coupon.
The below example shows you how to design and arrange your post so that it
captures the attention of your Fans:
Tip #2: Testimonials From Your Customers
The use of testimonials on your Facebook page can really help you develop
credibility for your products. You should, however, avoid testimonials that
just talk about how great your product is.
Your Facebook fans are more interested to hear what their peers and friends
are saying about your products and how the latter can solve their problems.
They want to see how your products can benefit them and remove their day-to-day pains.
One way to do this is to ask your customers what life was like BEFORE they used your
product/service, then ask them also what it's like NOW.
That's a really powerful way to get compelling testimonials that speak to your
target audience's pain, and people will instantly connect themselves to that and want what you sell.
Companies selling diet and health products actively use video testimonials to
allow their customers to testify how the products changed their life for the better.
Below is an example of a testimonial post from a Coca Cola consumer.
The girl and her cousin love Coca Cola, and wanted to share how this beverage brings them together.
Tip #3: Include Your Product In A Story
Posting only your product image is pretty boring. You need to mix it up in a story showing
how your product is going to benefit your potential customers, in this case, your Facebook fans.
There are 4 main things to consider while creating your post:
Try not to focus on the products, but more on the results and activities. Demonstrate visually
how fun or satisfying your product is.
Use images rather than words to show the end result, or the process of what can be achieved using your products.
Discuss how celebrities or highly influential people use your products (if possible).
Be a problem solver. Show your Facebook fans how you can solve their problems by using your products.
They will find it practically impossible not to hit on that "buy" button.
The post by Walmart below is really good. It sells products essentially to grow crops like salsa
without advertising the fertiliser "Miracle-Gro".