It was just a couple weeks after I started my design studio that I received my first “real” inquiry. (AKA it wasn’t my mom.)
I’ll never forget that moment. It was a rush that made me feel like this freelance thing could actually work.
Of course I crunched the numbers countless times in Excel, convincing both my husband and I that I could create a profitable business. But as we all know, hypothetical numbers aren’t reality. Once I got my first inquiry asking for my design services it suddenly felt real.
But here’s where things got interesting.
While I was beyond ecstatic at the potential work + income coming my way, another emotion surfaced up that this laid-back gal hadn’t seen much of before.
A million questions followed seconds after celebrating that one email sitting in my inbox.
Do I even offer the services they’re looking for?
They don’t seem like my “ideal” client… should I work with them anyways? I shouldn’t be picky right now, or should I?!
How long will this project last?
Do I send a formal proposal? If so, is it beautifully designed using InDesign, or is there a software I’m supposed to use?
How do I send an invoice through Quickbooks? This. is. overwhelming.
How the heck do I price the quote?
As my typical response goes when I have questions… I take to researching the heck out of it. And by research, I really mean stalking other designer’s sites trying to make sense of the process and pricing. (just me!?)
I had too many unanswered questions before I felt equipped to respond to the coveted one inquiry in my inbox.
What followed in the next 24–48 hours involved my husband and I going back and forth on pricing. $1,000? Nah… that’s too cheap they won’t take me seriously. $2,000? Too pricey… I don’t deserve that with little experience! You get the jist.
It was at that moment I recognized how essential a streamlined client process was for my business.
Especially considering — (spoiler alert) — I couldn’t book that client.
Which brings us to the finale of our “focus” series. Where should you focus your efforts to book design clients? (hint: it’s not necessarily instagram) We’ve talked about 1) marketing and 2) creating a red-carpet client experience and now we’re concluding with 3) a streamlined client process.
Pretty quickly, I figured out that I needed solid systems. It took ages to figure out what worked and what didn’t, but eventually I managed to implement simple, streamlined systems that allowed me to:
Do the work I love with clients that make me giddy-happy in just a few hours a day
Have long-term financial security so that I can invest in my business and my life
Work from home with my first baby, Hank – who definitely doesn’t let me spend all my time at the computer!
You can have all this, too. (Not Hank, obviously.) And I want to help fast-track you to it by nailing down your client process. This was KEY to optimizing my business, and my bank account did a happy dance as a result.
I’m teaching a free workshop called 7 Secrets to Amp Up Your Client Process and you’re invited to take a front row seat! All next week I’m hosting a 5-day live workshop series dubbed #FreelanceWeek, and this is the one you definitely won’t want to miss.
Because I don’t want you to spend another moment staring into your microwaved coffee/ inbox of 254 emails/ the abyss wondering how to make this freelancing life both easier and more profitable.
From initial inquiry to project completion, I’m giving you the inside scoop on exactly how I run my business so smoothly and time-efficiently.
So come join me! Click here to register for the #FreelanceWeek workshop series and get my 7-part streamlined client process on Wednesday, August 1st @ 1pm EST.
This is a client process training I’ve run a few times before and it gets so much love e-v-e-r-y time. Both from the attendees AND their own clients who reap the rewards of the learnings!
It isn’t an hour of fluffy, useless information. It’s packed with valuable, actionable content that will transform your business and bottom line when implemented.
Making money as a freelance designer doesn’t have to feel like crawling through a dark tunnel which never seems to end. I want you to wake up every day pumped to sit down at your computer (or stand at your standing desk!), serve your amazing clients, watch the profits roll in, AND have time for an actual life.
So let’s have a La Croix date in my little virtual studio where you can whip open a fresh Moleskine and learn exactly how I do things, so you can do them too.
My secrets are yours for the swiping!
(And I promise they’re worth swiping. Last time I ran this workshop over 800 people went crazy for it.)
I can’t WAIT to see you there!
PS - Scrolled straight down here? That’s cool :) You’re invited to my special 5-day live #FreelanceWeek training series including “7 Secrets to Amp Up Your Client Process” on Wednesday, August 1st @ 1pm EST for an inside look at how to run a smooth and profitable freelance design business that gives to your life instead of takes from it. Just click here to sign-up for the free workshop series!